Congo’s state-owned copper miner Gecamines plans to build a 500MW coal-fired plant to help mining firms address electricity shortages.
Gecamines CEO Ahmed Kalej Nkand was quoted by Bloomberg as saying that the firm is undertaking a feasibility study for the €500m thermal power plant, which will use coal from Luena in Katanga province.
"In 36 months we could have the center operational," Nkand added.
The firm will make power available to mining firms, particularly from Katanga, who have been buying power from neighboring Zambia and using generators to meet production targets.
Gecamines noted that the company will use some of the power from the plant to increase its own copper production to 100,000t per year from about 30,000t.
The mining firm is also in talks with the Development Bank of Southern Africa about securing $270m in financing, which is likely to be concluded by December, Gecamines said.