ZESCO signs solar power deal with SkyPower

SkyPower Global has signed a 1 GW solar power purchase agreement (PPA) with a Zambian utility to supply electricity to approximately 4 million homes. Zambian President Hakainde Hichilema hailed the significance of the deal amid ongoing droughts.

SkyPower Global has signed a 1 GW PPA with state-owned utility Zambia Electricity Supply Corp. (ZESCO). The Canadian solar developer said that the Green Giant Zambia project will supply electricity to approximately 4 million homes, create jobs, and support infrastructure development.

“The Green Giant Zambia initiative is a monumental step towards a sustainable future,” said Michael Prest, Ccountry manager and special adviser to SkyPower. “By leveraging cutting-edge solar technology and our collective expertise, we are set to dramatically transform Zambia’s energy landscape, making it a model for renewable energy development worldwide.”

The PPA has been heralded as a pivotal component of Zambia’s Integrated Renewable Energy Plan, which is geared toward developing renewable energy sources, including solar, wind and hydropower. Zambian President Hakainde Hichilema said the deal is a crucial component of this plan, especially due to the current problem of droughts caused by climate change.

“This initiative aims to substantially increase our renewable capacity to address both current and future energy needs as Zambia aims to increase industrial productivity and fulfill our aspiration to attain over 3 million metric tons of annual copper production,” claimed Hichilema. 

Zambia’s installed solar capacity stood at 124 MW at the end of 2023, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). In February, ZESCO commenced an engineering, procurement and construction tender for a 7.5 MW solar plant.