Africa50 and Nachtigal Hydro Power Plant announce operational launch of the first turbine in the €1.3 billion plant

14 June 2024
  • The launch is a critical milestone towards the power plant reaching full capacity by December 2024 

  • The project will provide low cost electricity to millions of businesses and households, saving a projected €50-100 million annually in generation costs  

  • The hydro power plant will boost energy production by 30%, raising the share of renewable energy in Cameroon’s energy mix to 75% 

Casablanca, 14 June 2024 - Africa50, the pan-African infrastructure investor and asset manager, today announced that the first 60 MW turbine of the 420 MW Nachtigal hydro power plant in Cameroon has successfully completed its test phase and will start to feed power into the national grid. The launch of the first unit is a significant milestone towards the project reaching full capacity in December 2024.  

The Nachtigal Hydro Power Plant is one of the largest renewable energy projects ever developed in Africa. It will improve the long-term sustainability of Cameroon's electricity sector, providing low-cost electricity to millions of businesses and households - with the potential to save €50- €100 million annually in power generation costs. Cameroon has the second largest hydropower potential in Africa, with an estimated capacity of 12,000MW in the Sanaga basin.  

Africa50 holds a 15% stake in the Nachtigal Hydro Power Company (NHPC), together with EDF Energy (40%), the International Finance Corporation (20%), the Republic of Cameroon (15%) and STOA Infra & Energy (10%). The power plant will be operated under a 35-year concession between the Government of Cameroon and the NHPC. 

The investment forms part of Africa50’s mission to close Africa’s infrastructure gap with speed and scale, leveraging deep sector expertise, innovative technologies, local and global capital to make infrastructure projects investment-ready.  

The €1.3 billion Nachtigal power plant is set to increase domestic energy production by 30%, helping to raise the share of renewable energy in Cameroon’s energy mix to 75%. The first-of-its-kind project supports the country’s energy sector reforms with plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 35%. 

Located 70 km north of the capital city of Yaoundé on the Sanaga River, the project has prioritised commitments to protecting the local environment and livelihoods with plans to preserve fish stocks and aquatic plant life and implement a community health plan with productive gains for the local economy through training programmes in entrepreneurship. As of April 2024, 40 sessions have been held, training more than 1,000 local residents in skills such as business creation and management. During construction stage, the Natchigal project created up to 2,490 direct jobs. 

The country’s hydro power potential creates a tremendous opportunity to deliver projects in a region where 90% of hydropower potential remains untapped. 




About Africa50  

Africa50 is an infrastructure investment platform that contributes to Africa's growth by developing and investing in bankable projects, catalyzing public sector capital, and mobilizing private sector funding, with differentiated financial returns and impact. 



Nana Boakye-Yiadom 

Category: Press Release