K650 million hydropower project in PNG opens after 15 years

Edevu Hydro Power Project
Edevu Hydro Power Project

Port Moresby’s power blackouts may now be over.

After 15 years, the National Government and its Chinese partner PNG Hydro Development Limited formally launched the Edevu Hydropower Project located along the Brown River area outside Port Moresby.

The company PNG Hydro Development Limited has invested K650 million in the project which is one of Central Province’s biggest assets that will supply electricity not only to Port Moresby but the whole Southern region in the near future.

The government has partnered with the developer of the project by way of K120 million (US$34 million) for a 132KV transmission line from Edevu to Port Moresby which is already under construction, on top of the K650 million (US$184 million) spent by the company.

PNG Hydro Development Ltd managing director Allan Guo said it took them almost 15 years to reach the launch of the project and this was possible through the good relationship and discussions they had with the landowners of Edevu.

He said it is a private investment without any guarantee from the Government because they believe that their investment will greatly have an impact on the lives of the people and country as a whole.

Prime Minister Marape James thanked the developer for having trust in PNG and privately funding the project.

Marape said it’s a wonderful reflection of an investor, who saw this opportunity thousands of miles away, and had faith in PNG. He said Edevu landowners had done, by going into partnership with a foreign investor, was a good example for traditional landowners in the rest of the country.

“You have shown a wonderful example to other landowners right across our country.

You (landowners) own 97 percent of land rights. My Government, as governments of past, and any government into the future, will not break that right you have. It is your inherent, God-given right to your land.

“But land sitting idle is of no use to us, or more importantly, our children and their children that will come into the future,” Marape said.

The Sirinumu Dam and its Rouna 1, 2 and 3 stations are the main suppliers of electricity to Port Moresby and surrounding areas.

However, years of neglect and usage has led to many of the equipment being worn out, resulting in constant blackouts in Port Moresby.

Also a growing population places a huge demand on power uses which results in overloading. The PNG Power Limited has also raised concern in the past about illegal power connections.

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