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Project Update

North West Grid Project, Tanzania [free access]

February 4, 2020

Developer: Tanzania Electric Supply Company Limited (TANESCO)          


Project details and status: The project entails the construction of a 1,148-km-long, 400 kV line to link Mbeya, Sumbawanga, Mpanda, Kigoma and Nyakanazi,which will connecteight district headquarters, of which three are regional headquarters, to the national grid.


The project will be implemented in three phases. The first phase involves the construction of the 340-kmMbeya–Tunduma–Sumbawanga line. Phase two involves the construction ofthe 280-kmNyakanazi–Kigoma line. Phase III involves the construction ofthe 480-kmKigoma–Mpanda–Sumbawanga line.


The Northwest Grid Project aims to improve supply, reliability and affordability of electricity in the Kigoma Region in north-western Tanzania by providing main grid access. This will in turn help achieve the socio-economic transformation of the region, in line with Tanzania Vision 2025. The Vision 2025 aims to build a solid foundation for a competitive and dynamic economy to establish a high quality livelihood.


The World Bank is financing the first phase. Phase two will be financed by African Development Bank (AfDB), South Korea Economic Development Co-operation Fund (EDCF) and the Government of Tanzania. TANESCO is in talks with various development partners to mobilise the required funds for the third phase.


In May 2018, TANESCO invited international competitive bids for the provision of consultancy services for the 400 kV Nyakanazi–Kigoma transmission line, substations and rural electrification for villages in Kigoma Region associated with the project.


In November 2018,AfDB extended a USD123 million loan for financing the 280-km-long, 400 kV line, extension of the Nyakanazi substation, and construction of a new substation in Kigoma under the project, which comprises the first phase of the project. In addition, EDCFwill provide USD44.19 million and the Government of Tanzania will provide USD18.54 million for the first phase of the project.


In January 2020, TANESCO invited expressions of Interest (EoIs) for undertaking studies for the 400 kV Sumbawanga–Mpanda–Kigoma transmission line, along with associated substations and rural electrification for villages in the Katavi region (Phase III), under the project.


The project is expected to be completed by 2023.