ACWA Moatize power station

From Global Energy Monitor
This article is part of the CoalSwarm coverage of Mozambique and coal
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The ACWA Moatize power station is a proposed 270-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power station in Mozambique.


The map below shows the Moatize mine in Tete province, where the plant would be built.

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On Feb 18, 2014, the Mozambican government approved a coal-fired project with a capacity of 600 MW. The project would be run by ACWA Power Moatize Termoelectrica SA, a consortium whose main shareholders are ACWA Power of Saudi Arabia, Vale of Brazil, and Mitsui of Japan. The power station will be located at the mouth of the open cast Moatize coal mine, operated by Vale. The higher grade coal (particularly coking coal) mined by Vale will be exported, while the lower grade coal will be burnt in the power station.[1]

Construction of the power station is expected to take three years. The project will be built in two phases. The first phase will involve the construction of a 300 MW plant for US$1billion.[2] The plant would be a pulverized fuel, sub-critical power station. About 250 MW of the total capacity of 300 MW will feed the Moatize mine, with the remaining 50 MW supplied to the national grid.[3]

The sponsors have selected international contractor GS Engineering & Construction from Korea for the engineering, procurement and construction of the project, and ACWA Power’s wholly owned subsidiary NOMAC will be responsible for the operation and maintenance of the plant.[3]

According to ACWA Power (May 2016) the power station is planned to be 270 MW. ACWA said it had one PPA with Vale MZ for 220 MW, and another with Electricidad de Mozambique for 50 MW. The project was seeking half a billion dollars in financing from multilateral lenders and export credit agencies. Commercial operation was planned for Q1 2018.[4]

As of June 2020 the project is no longer on the ACWA website, and there have been no developments in securing financing. The project appears to be shelved.

Ownership and financing

ACWA holds 56.5% of the power station project, with smaller shareholdings by Mitsui of Japan and Vale, while Mozambican company Whatana Investment Group has 8% and Electricidad de Mozambique owns 5%. The estimated cost is US$1 billion. ACWA is trying to raise funding from various export credit agencies and multilateral and development financing agencies. The amount required from these sources exceeds US$500 million, according to ACWA.[5]

According to a March 2016 report, Paddy Padmanathan, CEO of ACWA Power, described finding financing for the plant as "turning out to be quite a challenge." Padmanathan said that there had been "a few different configurations on the financing structure." The report said that Korean engineering firm GS will build the plant, meaning that Korean export promotion bank KEXIM is likely to be one of the financiers. Another possible lender is the African Development Bank.[6]

Coal mine

The plant would be constructed in Tete province, where Vale has developed and is operating the biggest coal mine in the world, the Moatize mine.[7]

Brazilian mining company Vale has been present in Mozambique since 2004 with the Moatize coal mine. The company mined 3.77 million megatonnes of metallurgical and thermal coal in its first full year of operations in 2012. Moatize phase II is scheduled for 2015, and Vale has said it will increase production at the mine to 22 million megatonnes annually, including five million megatonnes of thermal coal. Vale is also constructing the Nacala Corridor to connect Moatize to the Nacala port, and restoring Sena Railway to connect Moatize to the Beira port.[8]

In January 2014 Mitsui said it had agreed to pay nearly US$450 million for a 15 per cent stake in the Brazilian group’s Moatize mine, and invest a further US$188 million to fund the mine's expansion. Mitsui also agreed to pay US$313 million for a 50 per cent stake in Vale’s subsidiary that has been promoting the multibillion dollar Nacala port and rail project.[9]

Project Details

  • Sponsor: ACWA Power Moatize Termoelectrica SA
  • Parent company: ACWA Power (56.5%), Vale, Mitsui, Whatana Investment Group (8%), Electricidad de Mozambique (5%)
  • Location: Moatize, Mozambique
  • Coordinates: -16.167807, 33.789454 (location of Moatize mine in Tete province)
  • Status: Cancelled
  • Capacity: 270 MW
  • Type: Subcritical
  • Projected in service:
  • Coal Type:
  • Coal Source: Moatize mine
  • Source of financing:

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