SA LPG plant construction to start in 2013

gas_dbgg1979Construction of South Africa's largest liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) storage unit will start in 2013 and is expected to be functional by the end of the following year

The project, aimed at reducing perennial gas shortages in Africa’s largest economy, will cost about ZAR 1.2 billion (US$142.2 million), with imports coming from the Middle East, Gulf of Guinea and Angola.

“We will be commissioning the facility at the end of December 2014,” said Barthlo Harmse of Sunrise Energy, the company developing the site next to the Saldanha Bay port on the west coast.

Sunrise Energy is a joint venture between Ilitha Group and the state-owned Industrial Development Corporation.

The project is part of Pretoria’s strategy to diversify its energy mix away from electricity to alleviate pressure on state utility Eskom, which is currently operating under pressure.

An estimated three per cent of the country’s 49 million people use LPG and the project is aimed at adding another one million users over the next five years.

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