Renewable energy technology provider China New Energy (CNE) announced that Sunbird Bioenergy Africa and the Zambian Development Agency have signed official documents to move its Zambian bioethanol project forward.
The AIM-listed company said the signing of the investment promotional agreement was the first milestone in the Zambian project but that there were a number of other milestones which still needed to be reached with Sunbird before construction could start.
The Zambia bioenergy project on the Leuna Farm block in Luapula province is to develop a biorefinery to deal with the country’s chronic energy shortage and create jobs.
In a statement made in December 2015, China New Energy said: “Zambia has a chronic energy and job shortage and the parties have all indicated that they would like the development of the project to commence in 2016, with commercial operations starting in 2017, to help mitigate these effects. It should again be noted that a number of project milestones need to be completed including a feasibility study, the design specifications and an environmental impact assessment in order to achieve financial closure.”
China New Energy chairman Mr Yu said: “We maintain our view that Africa provides a long-term opportunity for CNE as the development of its bioenergy industry helps African governments deliver on their goals of energy security, job creation and economic empowerment of rural communities.”
CNE is also developing a biorefinery with Sunbird in Zimbabwe.