Cameroon’s Lom Pangar hydropower project to receive EUR 30m EIB funding
- Sep 7, 2012
The European Investment Bank today formally agreed to provide EUR 30m for the new Lom Pangar hydroelectric generation facility in Cameroon. Funding from Europe’s long-term lending institution will support construction of a new 46m high regulating dam, a hydroelectric power plant at the foot of the dam and a transmission line between the power plant and the Eastern Network. The project also includes a rural electrification scheme along the transmission line, environmental and social measures, and support for technical assistance and project management.
Agreement for the funding was formally signed in Yaoundé by Cameroon Minister of Economy, Planning and Regional Development, HEM. Emmanuel Nganou Djoumessi and the European Investment Bank’s regional representative Kurt Simonsen.
Meeting local energy needs will contribute to poverty reduction and stimulate economic growth across the country. When completed the Lom Pangar regulating dam will reduce seasonal variability in the Sananga River. This will both increase year-round production by 120 MW at the of the two existing Edea and Song Loulou hydropower plants located downstream and increase effective power generation from any future hydropower schemes on the river. The Lom Pangar project will generate an additional 30 MW of low-cost, hydropower for rural electrification in eastern Cameroon and create around 1,500 jobs during construction.
Cameroon has considerable hydropower potential of which only 6% is used and hydropower represents the cleanest and most cost-effective source of energy in the country. High electricity costs from other energy sources are a significant obstacle to investment and job creation. At present an estimated 86% of the rural Cameroon population lacks access to electricity.
The Lom Pangar hydropower project is expected to cost EUR 306m and funding is also being provided by the World Bank, French Development Agency, African Development Bank, Central African Development Bank and the Government of Cameroon. The European Investment Bank applies as guidelines the recommendations of the World Commission on Dams and is working closely with other lenders and the European Union Delegation in Cameroon to ensure the project complies with high environmental and social standards and to identify and address the environmental and social issues related to the project.
Since 2007 the European Investment Bank has provided more than EUR 82m for the water, energy and agriculture sectors in Cameroon and to support local private sector investment. Earlier this year the European Investment Bank agreed to provide EUR 29.5m long-term funding for the new Kribi power plant, the first natural gas powered power plant in the country, that will benefit more than a million people in Cameroon.