After being granted rights in October 2012 — and spending $20 million — to explore coal and methane gas in Zimbabwe, China Africa Sunlight Energy Ltd. is planning to move forward with a $2.1 billion investment, Bloomberg reported.
The development of both coal mines and a fuel-powered 2,100-megawatt plant will assist in preventing power outages. By the middle of the 2015, the company is hoping to produce 300 megawatts, doubling the capacity to 600 megawatts by the close of 2015.
According to Bloomberg, China Africa Sunlight Energy Ltd is a joint-venture between Zimbabwe’s Old Stone Investments Ltd. and Shandong, China-based Taishan Sunlight. China Africa Sunlight will eventually look to sell energy to Zimbabwe’s state-run power company, ZESA Ltd.
“For our project to be fully operational, we are looking at five years,” Charles Mugari, China Africa Sunlight general manager said in the report. “For the coal mining, we are looking at the end of next year. For power generation and coal mining we are planning to sink a billion dollars.”
With the country’s coal resources measuring in at 10 billion metric tons to 15 billion metric, studies to gauge gas resources will conclude in three months, Bloomberg reported.
“If they discover gas, the way we think they are going to, we want to export the gas overseas to India” Mugari added.
Through a partnership with Discovery Investments Ltd, the gas project would provide 4,500 jobs and begin by “piloting methane gas for domestic gas,” the report said. China Africa Sunlight Energy may transport gas and invest in Mozambique, where natural gas development is expected quickly to take off.