The Sudanese government recently announced its plan to build the country’s first nuclear reactor and a forthcoming nuclear power plant in 2020, the state news agency SUNA reported.
The plans will bring a secure and peaceful power option to a country where large divisions lack basic infrastructure, including electricity. Sudan currently ranks 116th in the world in electricity production, which is par for the course against neighboring countries Kenya (113th) and Ethiopia (121st).
The bulk of Sudan’s power currently comes from dams built along the Blue and White Niles. But the energy strategy has turned nuclear and a four-reactor power plant is now on the horizon.
Sudan is the largest country in Africa and the sixth most populous with over 41 million people. The power-generation puzzle has long beset the region, but there is now a solution that reflects long-term industry growth.
Director-general of the Sudanese Atomic Energy Agency, Mohammed Ahmed Hassen el-Tayeb was quoted by SUNA.
“The Ministry of Electricity and Dams has already started preparing for the project to produce power from nuclear energy in cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and is expected to build the first nuclear power plant in year 2020,” he said in the release.
The IAEA works with countries all over the world to help support nuclear power and it recently estimated that there will be 10 to 25 new nuclear power plants online around the globe by 2030.
Nuclear power is an extremely viable option for Africa. In particular, the renewed energy strategy in Sudan can be directly linked to the oil-driven economy boom.
Oil production—Sudan pumps out nearly 490,000 barrels per day—and high prices have lifted the once war-torn economy. The GDP growth in Sudan between 2007 and 2009 reflected an 11.1 percent increase.
Sudan has planned for many other industry overhauls in conjunction with its power ones, including in the agricultural industry where 80 percent of the Sudanese labor force is.