Turkey’s Yeo to invest $65m in a solar power plant with storage in Zambia

18 05 2024 | 10:05 Jean Marie Takouleu

As part of a partnership with local company GEI Power, Turkey's Yeo is to invest $65 million in the construction of a photovoltaic solar power plant equipped with an electricity storage system in Zambia.

The project was the subject of discussions a few days ago between Francesca Chisangano Zyambo, Permanent Secretary of the Zambian Ministry of Energy, and the heads of Yeo and GEI Power. The project approved by the Zambian government involves the construction of a 60 MWp photovoltaic solar power plant in the Choma district.

The solar farm will be equipped with a 20 MWh battery storage system. The project is being carried out by the Turkish company Yeo, in partnership with GEI of Zambia. “The project will contribute to economic activities in the Choma district through its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives, by working closely with the communities around the project site, and will employ 150 local people during the construction phase, and around 50 seasonal employees once the project is up and running”, explained Ignatius Anayawa, GEI’s Managing Director.

According to him, the future electricity infrastructure will be capable of supplying at least 65,000 Zambian households. The two partners have already set up the special-purpose company Choma Solar Power Plant, which will invest 65 million dollars. “The implementation of this project in the Choma district demonstrates our commitment to sustainable development in Zambia,” said Yasin Duven, Yeo’s Vice President of Business Development.

This project has been announced at a time when Zambia is seeking to diversify its electricity mix, with a view to overcoming its dependence on hydroelectricity, which has been severely impacted by drought in recent years. Faced with this phenomenon, which is reducing the flow of rivers and the capacity of dams to fill them, Zambia has turned to solar energy in recent years, with a number of power stations inaugurated in the Copperbelt, the country’s main mining region in the central north, on the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).