The project consists of the construction of a 147 MW Hydropower Plant on the Ruzizi river bordering DRC and Rwanda. It will be developed as a Public Private Partnership, through a concession provided to a private investor to develop, build, operate, and maintain the plant. Ruzizi III would be the third hydropower development on the river following Ruzizi I (RI - 29.8 MW) and Ruzizi II (RII - 43.8 MW). Reinforcement and extension of the transmission and distribution system in the DRC, Rwanda and Burundi will allow the evacuation of the additional 147 MW that will be produced by the new Ruzizi III hydropower plant.
The original EU-AITF technical assistance grant of €2,8 million, approved in May 2008, has been used by EIB to finance additional and complementary studies for the preparation of this project, mainly focusing on the development of an institutional framework for the management of the Ruzizi cascade, bankability of the project and additional technical studies for the interconnection of South Kivu and North Kivu and their interface with the CEPGL interconnected network.
In April 2010 the EU-AITF Executive Committee approved an increase of the TA grant to a total of €4.2 million for the funding of a second phase of project preparation, consisting of the preparation of an ESIA and development of an institutional framework for the management of the project associated water resources namely Kivu Lake and Ruzizi River. The institutional studies have resulted in the proposal of an International Treaty and creation of a Basin Agency that were approved by the Ministers of Energy of DRC, Rwanda and Burundi in July 2011.
In December 2015 the EU-AITF Executive Committee approved an Investment Grant to co-finance, along with the private sector developers, the development costs of the project related to geological, design and other studies to be incurred. The grant is to be converted to Governments' equity at Financial Close. In 2017 an additional grant was approved to cover the equity participation of Rwanda and Burundi.
Grant operations approved:
|Type of support||Lead Financing Institution||Amount||Year of approval|
|Technical Assistance||European Investment Bank (EIB)||€2 800 000||2008|
|Technical Assistance||European Investment Bank (EIB)||€1 400 000||2010|
|Investment Grant+ Technical Assistance||European Investment Bank (EIB)/Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau (KfW)||€11 000 000||2015|
|Investment Grant||European Investment Bank (EIB)||€ 22 000 000||2017|