Zesco to get €78 million for power upgrade

EUROPEAN Investment Bank (EIB) is expected to inject €78 million (over US$90 million) to improve Zesco Limited’s power distribution in Lusaka.
The programme is in partnership with the World Bank.
EIB head of regional representation for southern Africa and Indian Ocean Carmelo Cocuzza said in an interview that discussions with Government are currently on-going and the loan facility is expected to be signed soon.
“We are negotiating with the government in a power distribution line for Lusaka. It is a contract that is currently being co-financed with the World Bank, and the EIB will provide €78 million which is about US$90-92 million,” he said.
Mr Cocuzza said EIB has over the last three years financed the country’s energy sector citing Itezhi-Tezhi hydro power and Kafue-Livingstone transmission line as some of the projects financed by the bank.
About US$93 million was injected in the two projects.
He said the bank invested about US$200 million into the Zambian economy in the last three years to finance energy and private sector-led projects, as part of its commitment to support the country’s growth.
Under the private sector, the bank has been targeting institutions providing funding to micro, small and medium-scale enterprises (SMEs).
“We are also funding the micro finance sector and private sector development across the country…We are targeting companies such as Madison Finance Company, financial institutions and other financial intermediaries with a view to providing more lines of credit,” he said.
Mr Cocuzza said the bank remains committed to supporting the development of various infrastructure which include roads, rail and airports.

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