South Africa’s Energy Minister, Gwede Mantashe, said in Maputo on Friday that his country would need more energy from Mozambique, to make up for the deficit caused by the closure of coal-fired power plants.
“We are deactivating coal-fired power plants and have taken a concrete decision to replace these plants with gas technology, and that will increase the amount of gas we expect Mozambique to supply us with,” Mantashe told journalists at the end of a meeting with his Mozambican counterpart, Max Tonela.
Every coal-fired power plant that South Africa dismantles will be a market opportunity for Mozambique, because the country is rich in natural gas and hydropower, he added.
“We have 16 coal-fired power plants and all of them are under pressure to close and be replaced by technologies that allow for the reduction of carbon emissions. This is an opportunity for Mozambique to seize,” South Africa’s energy minister said.
Noting that South Africa is already buying natural gas produced by the South African oil company Sasol in Temane, Inhambane province, southern Mozambique, Mantashe said that he has been discussing with Max Tonela how the two countries could strengthen energy supplies.
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The Mozambican Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources said on the occasion that there was plenty of scope for intensifying cooperation with South Africa in the energy sector, noting that the country has “availability” of clean energy sources.
“Energy is a resource that has to be used for the development of our economy, but also for export,” Minister Tonela said, adding that Mozambique counts its energy wealth an asset for the integration of the economies of the Southern African Development Community (SADC).
In addition to the piped natural gas it buys from Temane, South Africa also receives energy from the Cahora Bassa Hydroelectric Power Plant (HCB) located in the central Mozambican province of Tete.
.@DMRE_ZA Minister Gwede Mantashe undertook a Working Visit to Maputo, Republic of Mozambique on 11 June 2021, where he met his counterpart the Mozambican Minister of Mineral Resources & Energy H.E. Ernesto Max Tonela to discuss bilateral energy cooperation. pic.twitter.com/0lvik15Duq
— South African High Commission in Maputo (@SAHCMaputo) June 11, 2021