The Regional Rusumo Falls Hydroelectric Project (RRFHP), a joint venture by Rwanda, Tanzania, and Burundi, is 95 per cent done, with completion set for November this year.
The 80MW project was started in February 2012 to supply electricity to the three countries by December 2021 but was extended by two years following procurement flaws that increased its cost by over 20 per cent.
The three governments received $468 million worth of grants and loans from multiple development partners, including the World Bank and the African Development Bank, for the project.
Taking over the one-year rotational chairmanship at the weekend, Tanzania’s Energy minister January Makamba said the project is expected to catalyse development in the three countries.
Each country is expecting 26MW to be added directly to its national grid.
“This project shows the willingness of these countries to use natural resources to bring about the development of their citizens,” said Mr Makamba.
Respective governments expect the project to help plug power supply deficits. Rwanda specifically banks on the project to help reach its 100 per cent electrification target by 2024.
The project is located at the Tanzania-Rwanda border, Rusumo Falls.