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New president Evariste Ndayishimiye, a former militia fighter and army general, was sworn in on 18 June, ten days after the death of Pierre Nkurunziza. The succession had created some uncertainty, as according to the constitution, Pascal Nyabenda, speaker of the National Assembly, should have taken over on the death of the president, but Ndayishimiye was already president elect, having won elections in May, and had been due to be sworn in in August. Following a ruling by the Constitutional Court, Ndayishimiye’s inauguration was brought forward.

Burundi
Issue 417 - 12 June 2020

Burundi leader dies

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Burundi’s outgoing president, Pierre Nkurunziza, has died as he prepares to hand over power to a chosen successor. His cause of death on 9 June was officially stated as cardiac arrest, but his wife was reported to have been airlifted to a Nairobi hospital in May suffering from coronavirus symptoms. Nkurunziza, who was 55, had said Burundi was virtually unaffected by the pandemic, and elections went ahead on 20 May, with retired army general Evariste Ndayishimiye winning a majority.

Burundi
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The World Bank Group’s International Development Association on 28 February approved a $100m grant to support rural electrification, along with a $60m grant for a community development programme supporting projects among vulnerable populations. The $100m grant will support the Solar Energy in Local Communities (Soleil) project – also known as Nyakiriza – which aims to almost double the electrification rate nationwide.The Soleil project aims to connect more than 91,000 families, 4,000 small businesses, 500 schools and 400 health centres to mini-grids or standalone solar systems with combined capacity of around 17MW.

Burundi
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Full notice to proceed was given on 23 January to contractors at the Mubuga solar PV project in Gitega province. The plant is Burundi’s first IPP to reach this point and will play an important role in reducing reliance on thermal power and providing power during the dry season. Mubuga has been in development by Gigawatt Global Coöperatief for five years alongside a range of international financial institutions. Commercial operation is expected by year-end.

Burundi
Issue 406 - 19 December 2019

Burundi: SEFA grant for hybrid scheme

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The African Development Bank-managed Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa has approved a $990,000 grant to support the preparation of a 9MW solar-hydro hybrid project. The project consists of two plants, the 1.07MW Ruvyi102 project in Ryansoro commune of Gitega province and the 8MW Mule037 project in Songa commune of Bururi province, each featuring a solar and a hydro component as well as a local distribution network and interconnection to the national power grid.

Burundi
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Songa Energy Burundi has reissued a request for expressions of interest (EoIs) from consultants to undertake development studies for the Ruvyi102 and Mule037 hydropower projects with potential associated solar PV plants. The contract, which is to be financed by the Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa, managed by the African Development Bank, will require detailed feasibility studies, including solar hybridisation assessment and grid interconnection studies, local distribution grid assessments, and environmental and social impact assessments.

Burundi
Issue 395 - 28 June 2019

Burundi: Kabu 16 under construction

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Construction work is under way on the 20MW Kabu 16 small hydro plant on the Kabulantwa River in Cibitoke province. Indian developer Angelique International has given Germany’s Voith an order to design, manufacture and supply the electromechanical equipment and will also supervise the installation and commissioning of the plant.

Burundi
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Songa Energy Burundi is seeking expressions of interest from consultants to carry out development studies for the 8MW Mule037 and 1.07MW Ruvyi102 hydropower projects, which are being co-developed with East African renewables developer Virunga Power. The studies will also look at solar hybridisation.

Burundi
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State utility Régie de Production et Distribution d’Eau et d’Electricité (Regideso) has given a joint venture of Italy’s CMC di Ravenna and Egypt’s Orascom Construction a contract for the construction of the Jiji and Mulembwe hydropower plants with a combined installed capacity of 48MW. The contract, valued at €67.8m ($75.94m), was signed on 17 October, according to a notice published on the World Bank’s project and procurement website.

Burundi
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State-owned utility Régie de Production et Distribution d’Eau et d’Electricité (Regideso) has launched an international tender to connect the Rusumo Falls hydropower plant on the Kagera River to the national grid. Bids are sought by 4 December for the design, supply, installation and commissioning of a 220kV line linking the Rusumo Falls plant via the northern city of Muyinga to the central city of Gitega, a 30kV line between Musasa and Muyinga, and substations at Gitega and Muyinga.

Burundi
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Energie des Grands Lacs (EGL), the energy agency of the three-nation Great Lakes Economic Community (CEPGL), invites prequalification applications by 26 November to support the development of the Ruzizi III hydropower plant on the Ruzizi River, which forms the border between the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Rwanda. The 147MW run-of-river project will be financed, built and operated by a consortium in a public-private partnership under a 25-year concession.

DR Congo | Rwanda | Burundi
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Rusumo Power Company Limited (RPCL) invites expressions of interest by 14 May from consulting firms to assist with the development of a business plan. The 80MW Rusumo Falls run-of-river project, which is being built on the Kagera River along Rwanda’s border with Tanzania, just downstream of the tri-point where the two countries share a border with Burundi, is scheduled to be commissioned in 2020. Output is to be shared equally between the three neighbours.

Rwanda | Tanzania | Burundi
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US-owned Dutch developer Gigawatt Global on 19 July announced that a solar street lighting initiative had launched in Bujumbura, ahead of its commercial-scale solar plant starting up by end-2017. Solar street lights have been installed in the central bus station and nearby marketplace. “This project will enhance security as well as provide opportunities for economic development to the citizens of Bujumbura,” a Gigawatt statement quoted mayor Freddy Mbonimpa as saying.

Burundi
Subscriber

Construction of the 80MW Rusumo Falls hydroelectric project in Rwanda is under way following an official groundbreaking ceremony held on 30 March. The run-of-river project on the Kagera River along Rwanda’s border with Tanzania, just downstream of the tripoint where the two countries share a common border with Burundi, is scheduled to be commissioned in 2020, with output to be shared equally between the countries.

Rwanda | Tanzania | Burundi
Issue 339 - 02 February 2017

Burundi: Solar project launched

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A groundbreaking ceremony took place on 18 January for a 7.5MW solar park being developed by Gigawatt Global at Mubuga, 100km east of Bujumbura (AE 287/6). The US-owned Dutch developer described the $14m project as the largest private international investment in the power sector in Burundi in nearly 30 years. Power will be sold for 25 years to state power and water utility Régie de Production et Distribution d’Eau et d’Electricité (Regideso). Construction and connection to the national grid is expected to be concluded in Q4 2017.

Burundi