Home | News    Monday 28 April 2008

Sudan, China sign $396mln contract to heighten Roseires Dam

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April 27, 2008 (KHARTOUM) — The Sudanese government today signed a contract with two Chinese firms worth 396 million U.S. dollars for the project to elevate Roseires Dam in eastern Sudan, funded by a number of Arab funds.

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Roseires Dam (ST)

The new project is intended to increase the height of the dam by an additional 10 metres resulting in an increase in the irrigation potential and power generation capability of the structure.

The signing ceremony of the contract with the Chinese state-owned Sinohydro Corp and China Water and Electric Corp (CWE) firms was attended by the Sudanese President Omer Hassan al-Bashir. The contract includes Hydromechanic equipment and reconstruction.

The initial capacity of the dam is 3.4 md. c.m. however the accumulated silt in the dam lakes has reduced the storage capacity by 25%. The project aims to heighten Roseires dam to increase the storage capacity to 7.3 md. c.m.

CWE is involved in the construction of the controversial Merowe dam in northern Sudan, where at least four people were killed in June when police dispersed residents protesting the project.

Minister of Finance and Economy Sudanese Awad Al-Jazz praised the financial institutions that have provided the necessary funds for the project, especially the Arab Fund for Economic Development and the Islamic Development Bank and the Kuwaiti Fund for Economic Development in addition to the OPEC Fund and the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development.

The Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development (KFAED) will extend Sudan a 58-million Kuwaiti Dinar (USD 212 million) loan for heightening the Roseires Dam,

The minister congratulated the Chinese companies winning the contract of the project and the two Australian and French firms which won the advisory contract calling on them to quickly work and complete the project in its time limit.

The Australian SMEC International, in association with Coyne et Bellier of France, has signed a contract with the Dams Implementation Unit of the Government of Sudan to undertake the design review and preparation of contract documents for heightening of Roseires Dam.

Minister of Irrigation and Water Resources Sudanese Mohammed Kamal explained in a speech delivered during the ceremony of the signing of the contract that " Roseires Dam comes in implementation of the strategic national plan observes the convention related to the sharing of Nile water signed with Egypt in 1959.

He pointed out that the amount of stored water will rise from three billion to 3.7 billion cubic meters and will double the production of electricity by 50 percent from the amount produced now. He also said that it will double the production of electricity 100 per cent by Sinnar Dam.

Arab investors from the oil rich Gulf and Egypt are investing huge amount of money in agriculture infrastructure in northern and central Sudan to produce vegetables and cereals. Sudan also will receive some thousands of Egyptian farmers.

The dam, built during the 1960s, is located on the Damazin rapids in the Blue Nile, about 520 kilometres south-east of the capital Khartoum and about 150 kilometres downstream from the Ethiopian border.

It consists of a 1000 metre-long central concrete buttress section with earth embankment sections on each fl ank, 8.5 kilometres and four kilometres in length. A 280 MW hydroelectric plant located at the dam supplies nearly half of Sudan’s power output. The dam also provides irrigation water for the Gezira Plain.

(ST)

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