The Swedish Embassy and the World Bank have reportedly signed a USD 28 million administrative agreement as part of the ongoing preparations to assist the Zambezi River Authority (ZRA) in their plans to rehabilitate the Kariba Dam to improve its overall safety and reliability.
The World Bank is reportedly also considering additional financing for the project alongside the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the European Union (EU), who together would contribute approximately USD 294.2 million to bring the dam up to international dam safety standards with plans to reshape the plunge pool, restore the spillway and improve operations.
According to Kundhavi Kadiresan, the country director of the World Bank Group, the dam presents opportunities to increase access to reliable power generation, which is needed in order to meet the increasing regional demands.
“The work between Zambia and Zimbabwe on the Kariba rehabilitation, and collaboration by the partners, has paved the way for further collaboration on harnessing energy sources between the two countries and driving transformational changes that can impact the lives of the people in the sub-region,” she said.
The Kariba Dam, which sits on the Zambezi River on the border between Zimbabwe and Zambia and currently generates approximately 1,600 megawatts of power for both countries, is managed by the bi-national organization known as the Zambezi River Authority (ZRA).
The ZRA will receive the co-financing from Sweden through a dedicated trust fund that will be administered by the World Bank.