Kenya’s Ministry of Energy has announced that three firms will next week be invited to give proposals for exploiting the controversial Mui Coal Mines in Kitui.
The ministry says it received and evaluated four submissions to determine which firms qualify to proceed to the Request for Proposals (RFP) which is the next stage in the procurement process.
The ministry plans to issue the RPF to the three successful firms on December 2, 2014.
The consortium of TransCentury Investments; Liketh Investments Kenya Limited and HCIG Energy Investments Company Limited; with the third firm being the Consortium of China Northeast Electric Power Engineering Corporation (NEPC) and China Coal Technology and Engineering Group (CCTEG) are the companies that have been prequalified.
The TransCentury Consortium also includes Continental Coal as the mining and operations partner and Power Machines (OJSC) as the technology partner.
The Mui Basin Coal Block includes two blocks comprising of the Zombe-Kabati block and Mutitu-Itiku block.
According to the Ministry of Energy, the Mui Basin has an estimated one billion tonnes of coal, valued at $75 billion, and which can produce 5,000MW of electricity.
The move by the government to concession the coal blocks A and B accelerates Kenya's vision of being a coal producer, after the mining contract for the first coal blocks C and D were awarded three years ago to Chinese investors Fenxi Mining Company.
The basin has been sub-divided into Zombe, Kabati, Itiko, Mutito, Yoonye, Kateiko, Isekele and Karunga sub-basins. The later four basins fall under Block C and D.