Egypt’s Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly, on behalf of President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi, and Tanzanian President John Joseph Magufuli signed a contract on Wednesday to establish Stiegler’s Gorge dam.
Magufuli invited Al-Sisi to attend the laying of the project’s cornerstone ceremony in October. Egypt’s Minister of Electricity, Mohamed Shaker, and Mohamed Mohsen Salah, president and CEO of the Arab Contractors Company which is executing the project, were present during the signing ceremony.
The Tanzanian government has also allocated $307m for the construction of a 2,100 MW hydroelectric plant connected to the dam, with an expected reservoir length of 100 km, covering an area of about 1,350 skm. The whole project’s costs represent over 40% of the country’s proposed fiscal year (FY) 2018/19 budget.
Stiegler’s Gorge dam is east Africa’s largest hydropower dam, located along the Rufiji River in the heart of one of Africa’s largest remaining wild areas, the Selous Game Reserve. The dam is expected to provide power for the country’s emerging industries, with plans to export the production surplus to other east African countries.
Working on construction of the dam will be launched in January 2019, and it is expected to take three years, with an estimated inauguration date in 2022.
Last week, President Al-Sisi discussed in a phone call with Magufuli the latest developments regarding the Stiegler’s Gorge dam. He pointed out that it will set a cooperation prototype in Africa.
Egypt and Tanzania have strong ties as both are Nile Basin states and are cooperating in several economic issues. In August 2017, President Al-Sisi headed to Tanzania as the first destination of a four-day tour involving four African countries, Rwanda, Gabon, and Chad, as part of Egypt’s sagacity to boost its relations with other African countries.