On February 2,2017, the Atbara River, having been silent for thousands of years, was turned into an ocean of joy, as the grand project, the Dam Complex of Upper Atbara undertaken by CWE, was inaugurated at 10 a.m. local time. The President of Sudan, Omar Hassan Al Bashir, accompanied by ministers and representatives of Sudanese Government agencies, attended the ceremony. Immersed in the jubilant atmosphere, tens of thousands of locals were singing and dancing passionately to celebrate the commissioning of the project first unit.
Chinese Ambassador to the Sudan Li Lianhe, Counselor Zhou Chunlin, and the Minister of Water Resources, Irrigation and Electricity of the Sudan Hon. Mutaz Musa, as well as some ministerial officials from other countries and representatives of the Arab foundation, the project funder, witnessed the inauguration. Liu Yonggang, the project manager of CWE, was invited to attend the ceremony as the Contractor’s representative.
Amid thunderous cheers of the locals, His Excellency, the President of Sudan, Omar Hassan Al Bashir gave an exciting speech, highly recognizing the project progress and commitment of CWE during the construction of the project.
His Excellency exhilaratingly asserted that the project would certainly provide needed energy to the Gadaref State and Kassala State and even boost the agriculture and husbandry industry in the Sudan as a whole, as it would greatly improve the irrigation and portable water at neighboring areas.
To honor the auspicious moment and covey congratulations, the Board Chairman of CTG Lu Chun, Vice President of CTG Lin Chuxue, CWE’s president Li Li and vice president Liu Zengxue, wrote congratulatory letters respectively, which were forwarded to Minister Mutaz at the ceremony.
The total contract value of the project is USD 838 million. Commenced in May, 2010, the 320MW project was designed for a 3.6 billion m3 reservoir capacity that will provide irrigation to an area of 500 thousand ha. for 7 million people and portable water for 3 million, and electricity for another million. Almost one third of the Sudanese will benefit therefrom. Since January of 2015 after the project impoundment, a reservoir of 3 million cubic meters has been formed. This strategic project was paid many attentions and frequently inspected by high-ranking officials of the Sudan, including the President Bashir.
Despite of the separation of South and North Sudan, severe security problems, inflations, shortage of construction materials among other challenges, CTG-CWE joint venture managed to complete the main civil works and put the first unit into commission after six-year painstaking efforts. The Dam Complex of Upper Atbara Project will be the third large hydropower facility in the Sudan undertaken by the company, following the Merowe Dam Project, the Roseires Dam Heightening Project. The successful completion of this project will further establish the responsible images of CTG and CWE in the country and serve as another symbol of friendship between China and the Sudan.
(Translator: Jiang Guangwen, Proofreader: Ma Li)