Govt seeks more loans

The Namibian government has prepared a presentation for loans from the New Development Bank, locally known as the Brics Bank.

15 October 2018 | Infrastructure

It appears that the Namibian government is preparing an official pitch to obtain funding from the New Development Bank, more commonly known as the Brics Bank, for the construction of the Baynes hydropower project as well as the Trans-Kalahari Rail link (TKR), the Grootfontein – Rundu – Katima Mulilo rail link and the deepening of the Port of Lüderitz.

The bank, founded and funded by Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, is headquartered in Shanghai, China, with its first regional office in Johannesburg.

The government's debt at the end of March 2018 stood at just over N$78 billion, slightly more than a third of the country's gross domestic product, which is at N$191

billion.

In a brief presentation seen by Namibian Sun, the projects are listed as priority projects. Communications minister Stanley Simataa said in September that the government was eyeing the development of the projects in its quest to make Namibia a logistics hub for southern Africa.

In the document, the government says the purpose of the project is to open a rail trade route from Walvis Bay to countries such as Zambia, Zimbabwe, Malawi, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Botswana.

“Currently, all cargo from Walvis Bay destined to and from land-locked countries is transported by road, and this is causing damage to the infrastructure, high maintenance costs and accidents,” the document says.

A feasibility study of the Grootfontein-Rundu portion was carried out in 2010, and the government is currently engaged with route alignment and design, including the rail traffic and cargo interchange at Grootfontein.







Ironically, the TKR project features despite the fact that no significant headway has been made to bring that project to fruition.

“The TKR is a bilateral project between the governments of Namibia and Botswana to construct a railway line of about 1 500km linking Botswana and Namibia to transport coal to the overseas market,” the document says.

Despite the inclusion of the project, Namibian high commissioner to Botswana Mbapeua Muvangua told Southern Times last year that an office had been set up in Namibia to accommodate three Namibian technicians and three technicians from Botswana, but they were still waiting on the latter to make their technicians available.

“Once the technicians are in the office, they have the mandate to form public-private partnerships with other investors,” he said, adding that the project required billions of dollars in investment, which needed the support of private investors.

The other project, the expansion of the Trans-Orange corridor, ties in with plans to deepen the port of Lüderitz by 18 metres to tap into the export of manganese from South Africa's Northern Cape.

Under this project, the government intends to extend the railway line from line from Keetmanshoop to the Northern Cape. Plans are in place to upgrade the 40km railway line between Sandverhaar and Bucholzbrunn and upgrading it to an 18.5-ton axle load, which would raise the permissible speed to 60km/h.

Another listed project is the planned 600-megawatt Baynes hydropower station to be built by the governments of Namibia and Angola. A social impact study has not yet been completed for the project. The study, which is supposed to be completed before the end of this year, is about where the dam and power station will be located. The dam, once completed, may flood the burial grounds of the Ovahimba, a concern which was picked up by human rights pressure groups in the late 1990s.

“What still needs to be completed is the social impact assessment, which relates mainly to negotiations with the affected communities for their relocation from the site earmarked for the project,” NamPower told Namibian Sun in December 2017.



Enter the chinese

The Chinese government is said to have made a tempting offer to finance the upgrading of Hosea Kutako International Airport, which will cost N$5 billion and upwards. This forms part of its pledged funding to Africa of US$60 billion for the construction of infrastructure projects.

The government had sought N$10 billion from the Chinese during the Forum for China Africa Cooperation (Focac). Finance minister Calle Schlettwein defended the loans, saying that they were competitive.

The Chinese government is believed to have offered a 90% loan, repayable at 2% interest, while the rest of the money would come in the form of a grant to the Namibian government.

Negotiations are said to be ongoing.



Other assistance granted

The German government also came to the party with a N$450 million loan for the construction of the Windhoek-Okahandja dual carriageway, as well as a N$482 million loan for the refurbishment of the Mariental-Keetmanshoop road. The money was provided through its KfW development bank.

The government had in the past sought assistance from the African Development Bank (AfDB) to the tune of N$10 billion.



OGONE TLHAGE

Similar News

 

Houses, drought relief food not campaign strategy

2 hours ago | Infrastructure

People should not see houses built for them as a way for the ruling party to campaign for the upcoming election, but rather as development...

Work on Rundu weather office starts

3 weeks ago - 27 May 2019 | Infrastructure

The works ministry has appointed Bongi and Prince Trading to complete the construction of the outstanding and shoddy works done at meteorological office at the...

Home is where the heart is

2 months ago - 11 April 2019 | Infrastructure

The groundwork has been laid for the servicing of 400 plots in two new low-cost residential areas in Oshakati and Okahao.Three-hundred more will be pegged...

TransNamib boosts business at Grootfontein

2 months ago - 02 April 2019 | Infrastructure

TransNamib and Ascon Energy (Pty) Ltd signed an agreement for the rail transport of coal, containers and various commodities between Walvis Bay and inland terminals...

Oshakati council relocating residents to Onawa

2 months ago - 25 March 2019 | Infrastructure

OSHAKATI – Residents of the Eemwandi informal settlement at Oshakati will be relocated to Onawa as from 01 May this year.The Oshakati Town Council is...

Unfinished pipeline impacts 7 000 residents

2 months ago - 20 March 2019 | Infrastructure

About 6 932 people and 33 790 large and 18 395 small stock units are facing thirst, as the agriculture ministry battles to finish the...

Red tape delays housing handover

3 months ago - 18 March 2019 | Infrastructure

Windhoek town planning constraints and red tape, along with a host of other troubles, are to blame for the protracted delays in the handing over...

DBN pushes affordable homes

3 months ago - 11 March 2019 | Infrastructure

Fast-tracking residential land delivery and affordable housing will not only empower cash-strapped low-income earners and ensure them a stake in the local economy, but lead...

Hold-up on highways

3 months ago - 11 March 2019 | Infrastructure

Major sections of the Okahandja dual carriageway and the road from Windhoek to Hosea Kutako International Airport are yet to be completed.Works minister John Mutorwa...

Engineers, builders to pay for RA building repairs

3 months ago - 01 March 2019 | Infrastructure

The consulting engineering firm and the building contractor Namibia Construction will have to foot the bill for repairs to the Roads Authority’s new N$219 million...

Latest News

Sky is the limit for...

2 hours ago | Technology

Ester Kamati Megan Werner, an experienced model and published author, recently finished building an aircraft along with 20 other youth, which they plan to fly...

The weight of expectation

2 hours ago | Columns

A huge weight of expectation will undoubtedly rest on political leaders vying for office later this year. While there is a sense that the current...

It’s not that serious!

2 hours ago | Columns

Ester KamatiThis may be a worn-out topic but the need to talk about it is quite strong. Lately romantic relationships among youth have simply become...

New name for Etakaya

2 hours ago | Education

Justicia Shipena Etakaya Primary School, situated at Etakaya village of Etakaya in the Ohangwena Region, was recently renamed Sakaria H Nghikembua Primary School.The school...

Feeling the momentum!

2 hours ago | Sports

Ester KamatiWindhoek High School’s Vegkop stadium is home to many memorable games when it comes to rugby and this year was no different. The stadium...

Improving Africa through constructive debate

2 hours ago | Education

Ester KamatiThe 2019 Day of the African Child Debate and Public Speaking Championships knockout rounds were held at the St George's ­Diocesan School on 14...

40 000 to benefit from...

2 hours ago | Environment

More than 40 000 beneficiaries are expected to benefit from a climate change project in the Kunene Region.This is 57% of the total population of...

Houses, drought relief food not...

2 hours ago | Infrastructure

People should not see houses built for them as a way for the ruling party to campaign for the upcoming election, but rather as development...

A platform for leadership

2 hours ago | Education

Michelline NawatisesThe City of Windhoek Junior Council (JC) provides a platform for leadership potential and exposes learners to local challenges.They learn about local issues and...

Load More