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21 August 2018.

POWER PLANT FUELS LOCAL DEVELOPMENT

IFU and BWSC invest in 90 MW thermal power station in Kayes, western Mali. The project, which will generate energy to the Malian grid from 1 November 2018, has a strong community focus.

Access to affordable and reliable energy is key for Mali’s citizens and for Mali’s industry, as it  contributes to Mali’s development and poverty reduction in general.

The Malian Government has made an agreement with Albatros Energy Mali (Albatros) to build and operate a 90 MW thermal power station in Kayes, western Mali. IFU invests together with BWSC, a global turnkey developer, contractor and operator of tailored medium to large-scale power plants, AIIM, Africa Infrastructure Investment Manager and Redox Power Solutions, the developer of the project. The construction of the project started in July 2017, and the plant will generate energy to the Malian grid from 1 November 2018 onwards. The plant is located 12 km outside Kayes and 1 km from the village Médine with 1300 inhabitants.

Building a power plant creates many jobs during the construction phase and opportunities for local service providers. Albatros has created jobs for 380 local people, of which 140 were employed from the village of Médine.

Furthermore, after 12 months of construction an amount of more than €2 million has been spent on purchasing local services (construction subcontractors, rent, fuel, food, etc.). At the same time, during the preparation of the project, concerns were raised with regards to how the operation of the plant will impact the local community in terms of increased air emissions and poor air quality as well as risk of potential accidents and explosions at the plant. Therefore, Albatros Energy Mali has put a lot of effort into the development and implementation of an environmental and social management system to avoid and reduce potential impact on environment and people, including monitoring of air quality and procedures to ensure that the jobs created are decent jobs with proper labour conditions and a safe working environment.

Proper training and regular safety meetings are used to continuously evaluate the safety on site (daily toolbox meetings, weekly safety meetings, pre-employment safety inductions, visitor safety inductions, etc.). These safety trainings are highly recognised by everyone on the site as being crucial to keeping people safe. When IFU visited the site, there had been 333 days of construction without LTI (lost-time injury).

– Part of doing good business is also to be a trusted and responsible partner to the local community who welcomed our business. We focus on providing decent jobs as well as supporting the community in the field of health, water and education, says Koen Beckers, CEO of Albatros Energy.

Albatros has already created a good relation and dialogue with the community of Médine. Albatros has renovated the local health clinic and hired medical staff. Both the community and the staff at site have access to the health clinic.

– Albatros Energy has already been very good to Médine by creating jobs for our citizens and renovating our local health clinic, so we look very much forward to continuing the good collaboration with Albatros, says M. Djibril N’Diaye, Mayor of Médine.

A continuous, documented and transparent dialogue with the community is important to maintain the social license to operate for Albatros Energy. A good foundation has been created by Albatros for future dialogue and future opportunities to improve the conditions for Médine.

All projects, in which IFU invests, comply with national legislation and operate within IFC Performance Standards. In addition, IFU is a member of the UN Global Compact and thus supports and implements the ten principles in Global Compact.