Eltel wins its biggest contract ever to build electricity networks in Zambia. The contract is valued at 110 million euros and will take two years to complete from the beginning of 2014. The project consists of a regional power network in the North-Western Province of the country and its connection to the national grid.
“We have worked in Africa for many years and know the market very well. Africa is one of the most important growth markets for Eltel, and there is a great need to build power infrastructure in the country. Under five percent of the population south of Sahara have access to electricity in the countryside,” says Axel Hjärne, President and CEO of Eltel Group Corporation.
Eltel took first place in the competitive bidding process which included other major international players. Deputy Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development Charles Zulu commented in African newspapers: “Eltel was selected as the best evaluated bidder, following an open international competitive bidding process carried out through public tender.”
The project in Zambia comprises a complete transmission system consisting of materials and construction. The total length of the network will be 880 km of 132kV power transmission line. Eight transformer stations will also be built along the new line. Eltel will provide project planning and oversee project execution from start to finish. In addition to its own personnel from Sweden and Zambia, Eltel will also recruit local subcontractors for construction work. The project’s total manpower requirement is expected to be around 1,000 persons.
Nordea and Standard Bank will administer an export credit, which is financed by SEK, the Swedish Export Credit, and guaranteed by EKN. Installation works are expected to start in early 2014, when the financing contract has been signed and first payments have been made.
Eltel has vast experience of electrification projects in Africa and has been active on the continent for the past 30 years. Eltel has delivered more than 30 projects in Africa, with several ongoing projects in fast-growing economies like Zambia, Angola, Ghana, Liberia, Ethiopia, Mozambique and Tanzania. Some of these projects are financed by the World Bank, African Development Bank, and Nordic export credit institutions.