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Sh6.6 billion Malindi solar power plant operational

The Sh6.6 billion Malindi solar power project in Kilifi County is complete and its developers have started selling electricity to Kenya Power (KP) Company, an official has said.

Mr. Ali Chukka, a manager with the Malindi Solar Group that has been undertaking the project since 2019, told visiting United Kingdom (UK) Minister for Africa, Ms Victoria Grace Ford, that the project started operations in December last year.

Speaking when the minister toured the 40-megawatt solar photovoltaic project situated in Langobaya division within Malindi Sub County, Mr. Chukka said the company had sold about 300 megawatts of electricity to the power utility company since December 4, 2021.

Ms Ford was accompanied by the British High Commissioner to Kenya, Ms Jane Marriott and local National Government Administrative Officers led by Malindi Sub County Assistant County Commissioner (1) Angela Wanyama.

During a meeting with the British delegation, Chukka said Globeleq and Malindi Solar Group had completed the construction of the solar power station in 2021 and started generating power to the national grid in December the same year.

Chukka said apart from improving power stability in Malindi and the Coast region in general, the project had had immense socio-economic benefits to residents that included the employment of over 450 unskilled and semi-skilled workers from the community.

The Malindi solar plant is located nearly 50 kilometers west of Malindi town and is expected to provide electricity to KP, under a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA).

The project is being undertaken by British power company Globeleq, an independent power producer, in conjunction with the Malindi Solar Group through funding from the British Government and Globeleq.

Information from the Globeleq website indicates that the construction of the solar power plant is budgeted at US$66 million (about Sh6.6 billion), with CDC Group contributing US$50 million (Sh5 billion) and Globeleq raising the remaining US$16 million (Sh1.6 billion).

The power station is owned by the Malindi Solar Group Limited, a special purpose vehicle company which will operate the solar energy project. Globeleq of the UK owns 90 per cent of the limited stock while Africa Energy Development Corporation owns 10 per cent.

By Emmanuel Masha

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