Electricity hike could hit mines

Zambia’s decision to increase electricity prices by almost 29 percent for mining firms was likely to hit operations in Africa’s second-largest copper producer, the Chamber of Mines of Zambia said on Friday. The bulk power supply agreement tariffs between Zesco and Copperbelt Energy Corporation were increased last week to 6.84c per kilowatt-hour from 5.31c a kilowatt-hour. “Mining companies will not be able to absorb this cost, especially the high-cost producing companies,” said the Chamber of Mines of Zambia, which represents the mining firms. – Reuters


AfDB to assist power investors

The African Development Bank (AfDB) is in talks with Nigerian officials to boost the value of its partial-risk guarantee for power industry investments by $200 million (R2.1 billion) this year. An agreement would see the amount from which eligible projects could benefit rise to $380m from $180m, Bocar Toure, a senior energy economist at the AfDB, said on Friday. “The partial-risk guarantee is there to enhance the creditworthiness of the bulk trader,” Toure said. – Bloomberg


Atlas Mara to buy state stake

Atlas Mara, an investment company backed by former Barclays boss Bob Diamond, planned to buy a controlling stake in state-run Development Bank of Rwanda to build a regional financial services firm. “We are acquiring the government's stake through this process which is just over 75 percent,” Diamond said. – Reuters