Turkey’s Karpowership, which has the world’s largest fleet of floating power stations, expects to start producing 450 megawatts of electricity in South Africa in 2024 to curb the power shortage there, chief commercial officer Zeynep Harezi said.
The company expects to sign a financial deal by the end of this year, after it received an environmental licence to operate its “powership” in Richards Bay, Harezi told Reuters on the sidelines of an African investment forum in Marrakech in Morocco.
In addition to Richards Bay, the company plans two other LNG-powered floating stations in South Africa to be able to generate a total of 1.2 gigawatts, as part of a 20-year contract, with a five and 10-year early exit clauses, she said.
“We hope to get environmental licences for the other two sites – Saldanha and Coega – in the upcoming weeks,” she said.
The company sees opportunities in Africa’s energy shortage, which worsened after the COVID pandemic and the rise in fuel prices due to the war in Ukraine.
About 45% of Africans, or 600 million people mostly in Sub-Saharan Africa, lack access to electricity, according to the International Energy Agency.
Karpowership is in talks with Nigeria, Gabon, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Benin, Togo and Cameroun to supply their national grids, she said.
Guinea-Bisau has been receiving 100% of its electricity from Karpowership, which operates in 14 countries, mostly in Africa.
The company has 36 operational floating power stations and plans to increase its power-generating duel-fuel fleet to 46 vessels in the “next couple of months”.
“Today we have 6,000 MW. In the next three to five years we plan to increase that to 10,000 MW,” she said.
The company also operates a floating and regasification unit (FSRU) fleet and liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers, she said.