ZETDC and HDF Energy sign MoU to develop Zimbabwe’s first hydrogen plant

Hydrogène de France (“HDF Energy”) has reached a further step in the development of Zimbabwe’s first high-powered green hydrogen power plant, the Middle Sabi Renewstable®, by formalizing the shared goal to supply the Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company (ZETDC) in a Memorandum of Understanding.

The signing ceremony of the MoU for new green hydrogen cooperation was presided over by His Excellency E. D. Mnangagwa during the International Renewable Energy Conference, in Victoria Falls.

This Memorandum of Understanding was signed by Engineer John Diya and Nicolas Lecomte. It creates a framework for the joint technical and administrative work to complete the development of this first green hydrogen power plant investment in Zimbabwe, as well as the commercialization of its electricity and grid services, through a dedicated Power Purchase Agreement.

HDF Energy is developing the Middle Sabi Renewstable® in the Chipinge District, Manicaland Province in Zimbabwe. The project is located in the southeast part of Zimbabwe, very far from the country’s largest generation assets in the northwest. Benefits are thus created by locating the generation of stable and dispatchable renewable energy closer to the demand load centers thus reducing transmission losses and increasing access to electricity for the local population.

The plant will produce green power 24/7 feeding into the grid through the Middle Sabi Substation located 4 km from the project site. The annual electric production will be 178 GWh, providing electricity to more than 220,000 inhabitants.

The cooperation between HDF Energy and ZETDC will kick-start the implementation of green hydrogen investment and the development of technical green hydrogen skills in Zimbabwe.

Nicolas Lecomte, HDF Director for Southern and East Africa, said: “The electricity demand in the country is very high, in part because of the growth in demand by the productive sector, a positive sign for Zimbabwe’s future. Our solution, the Renewstable® hydrogen power plant, is particularly suitable, not only to supply the necessary electricity but also the network services to improve the stability and operating conditions of the electrical grid.

The signing today is a key step in our engagement with the ZETDC for the project, which demonstrates the commitment of HDF to invest in the development work required to reach a bankable power purchase agreement with the utility. HDF expects to reach financial close on the project and start construction in 2024/2025.”

Laurent Chevalier declared: “France is strongly committed to addressing the global challenge of climate change and promoting the development of renewable energy, and I am glad to see French expertise in the innovative field of green hydrogen develop its presence in Zimbabwe. This project contributes in a concrete way to strengthening the economic relationship and the partnership between our two countries.”

Engr. Haseeb Ullah

Haseeb covers the global energy market for both conventional and modern energy resources. His expertise is on the global energy supply chain from generation to distribution and end-users. He has a Master degree in Engineering Management and a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering.
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