The Regional Rusumo Falls Hydropower Project will play a key role in enhancing economic and social development in the region and in increasing regional power generation, while establishing and accelerating the volume of cross-border energy exchanges. The project is part of the Priority Action Plan (the project and programme list for short and medium-term implementation) under the Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA).
The EPC contracts for the dam and hydropower plant construction were signed on 9 November 2016 and the contractors have started construction works. The ground break ceremony took place at the project site on 30 March 2017. The planned commissioning date for the first turbine/generator is in 2020.
For the transmission lines component, a project engineering and supervision consultant has been procured and the design and bidding documents have been prepared, all the three countries launched the bidding documents for the transmission lines component. Rwanda has signed the two EPC contracts and contractor for the transmission line mobilized to site. Whereas, Tanzania finalized the bids evaluation and contract negotiations but awaiting clearance from authorities and Burundi is evaluating the bids proposals. The transmission lines construction are expected to be completed by September 2020.
The EU-AITF technical assistance grant finances the recruitment of an international consultant to handle the procurement process in collaboration with the project implementation agencies, REGIDESO, REG/EDCL (the former EWSA) and TANESCO, and the provision of procurement training for the staff of the three executing agencies.
This is critical for a timely start-up of the project procurement activities and hence for the achievement of the benefits associated with the project in terms of regional and economic development. The contract with the selected individual procurement consultant was signed in March 2015 and the consultant has completed its assignment, which were assisting the implementing agencies in the preparation of Terms of Reference, Request for Proposals for recruitment of project engineering and supervision consultant, shortlisting of consulting firms, evaluation of proposals, preparation of contract documents, negotiation with the recommended consulting firm and contract signing.
The remaining activity under this TA grant is to procure a contract expert to assist the executing agencies on contract administration and management and also provide training on contract administration. This activity will be carried out in 2019 since all the three countries sign the EPC contracts and contractors start construction activities.