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EU to fund G$615M hydropower station in Guyana

GEORGETOWN, Guyana–The European Union has agreed to fund the construction of a small hydropower station on the Chiung River at Kato in Region Eight.

The total cost of the project is pegged at 2.5 million euros (approximately G$615 million) with the EU contributing 1.8 million euros (approximately G$460 million) under the 10th European Development Fund (EDF) while the Guyana Government will contribute 613,949 euros (approximately G$154 million), the EU Delegation in Guyana announced in a press statement Monday. The construction phase is expected to begin in February 2013 and be completed by February 2015.

The statement said the financing agreement for the Micro-Hydropower System has since been dispatched by the EU Delegation in Guyana to the Minister of Finance who acts as the National Authorising Officer (NAO) for the EU funded programmes in Guyana. A public signing ceremony to officially launch the project is expected to follow in the very near future between the NAO and the Head of Delegation of the European Union in Guyana, the statement said.

The EU said that as part of the government’s broader hinterland electrification programme, the system will comprise a 330-kilowatt micro-hydropower station with its primary energy source being the 36 metres head waterfall in the Chiung River in the vicinity of Kato village.

“Sufficient generating capacity for electrical services is to be provided to a secondary school complex to be constructed by the Ministry of Education, existing government buildings such as the nursery/primary schools, the guest house, the police outpost, medical facilities, school dormitories and to also facilitate agro processing and commercial farming. Furthermore the system will provide electricity to Paramakatoi through a 16 km transmission line which forms part of the intervention,” the statement said.

It added that it is expected that the government will fast track the construction of the secondary school facility, which is a pre-condition for the investment to be made. “The secondary school complex is foreseen to be the main electricity consumer and therefore as such forms the basis for feasibility of the investment,” the statement explained.

According to the release, the Head of Delegation of the European Union in Guyana, Ambassador Robert Kopecký remarked that he “anticipates the speedy commencement of the construction phase of the system and hopes that the construction deadlines can be achieved without any major hiccups.”

He further emphasised that the project embodies initiatives under the Low Carbon Development Strategy, while expressing hope that similar sustainable energy uses could be employed especially for the hinterland regions. (Stabroek News)



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