Egypt is to benefit from a loan from the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) aimed at constructing a new power plant outside the capital, Cairo.

The government approved the $385m loan on Thursday as it continues to address the problems associated with its chronically underinvested power sector.
It needs at least $5bn to upgrade its outdated electricity generation system, according to Reuters, and the IDB loan will go towards a plant at Helwan, south of Cairo, which is expected to generate around 1950 MW.

The total cost of the station is estimated at $21m, with additional funding coming from other regional and international funds, a statement from the energy ministry said. The plant is expected to come online in stages during 2017 and 2018.

Renovation of run-down power plants is also needed. The Electricity Ministry says about a quarter of Egypt’s 51 power stations are more than 20 years old.

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