The solar power plant under the Bangweulu Power Company Limited is a joint venture of the Industrial Development Corporation and Neoen, a French based company.
The World Bank Group’s Scaling Solar Project awarded a contract to Neoen to construct a 100 mega watt solar power plant from the planned 500MW under the project.
Neoen holds a majority stake in the Bangweulu solar park and will be selling electricity to ZESCO for the next 25 years at a rate of $60.15 per mega watt per hour (MWh).
The project represents a total investment of $60 million, $39 million of which was contributed by the International Finance Corporation and the Overseas Private Investment Corporation.
During the launch, President Lungu praised the IDC for taking up the challenge to create an energy mix to bring solar power into the national electricity grid in response to the electricity deficit that affected the country in 2015.
He said the high demand for electricity was an opportunity for players in the energy sector to mobilise resources and invest in the sector.
And President Lungu reminded Zesco Limited to ensure all districts in the country have access to power as it was one critical component in the development process.
He also urged the IDC to speed up the process of bringing into reality other pending solar power plants across the country.
Others who attended the launch are United States Ambassador to Zambia Daniel Foote, French Ambassador Sylvaina Berger, World Bank country representative Ina Ruthenberg.
The President was accompanied by ministers Margaret Mwanakatwe (Finance), Christopher Yaluma (Commerce), Matthew Nkhuwa (Energy), Freedom Sikazwe (Presidential Affairs), Bowman Lusambo (Lusaka Province) and the Mayor of Lusaka City Miles Sampa.