The Democratic Republic of Congo asked Chinese and Spanish consortia vying to develop a long-delayed $14b hydroelectric project to join together and submit a single bid, Reuters stated.
According to the Daily Mail, the request will further delay the huge project, known as Inga 3 that has been planned for around 30 years. The government had said it would award the contract by the end of last year with an aim to launch construction this year.
In the running for the deal are two consortiums, one led by the Chinese Three Gorges Corporation and another grouped under Spanish construction company ACS.
The Congolese government agency handling the project ADPI asked the two groups to present a single offer, but did not set a deadline for starting to produce electricity.
In September 2016, the agency said it wanted electricity production to start in 2021.
The project along the Congo River will expand on two existing Inga hydroelectric dams and is part of an eight-stage Grand Inga project that would produce a record of 44,000 MW at an estimated cost ranging between $50b and $80b.
Of Inga 3’s 4,800 MW, 2,500 will be sold to South Africa and 1,300 are earmarked for Congo’s mining sector. The remaining 1,000 will go toward meeting domestic demand in a country where less than 15% of the population has electricity.