The imbalance between an increasing demand for energy and the production that is dangerously stagnant, has grown worse and lead to a power shedding that is becoming increasingly frequent. Burundi Government is particularly concerned by the insufficient energy production and considers it as the major constraint to the economy.
The city of Bujumbura has greatly enlarged, there are modern buildings and the economic activities have increased. New urban or trading centres have been created in the countryside including school, health and communication or telecommunication infrastructures.
Burundi is a country with a generous rainfall, lakes and endless rivers, wind and sun that have for a long time proved that Burundi is naturally privileged country in terms of climate conditions. Burundi has the exceptional opportunity of having so many renewable energy sources only requiring to be exploited for the benefit of the country.
Hydroelectric exploitation opportunities
- Hydroelectric energy with an untapped commercial potential of 300 MW;
- Geothermal Energy with commercial potential of 18 MW on 6 sites;
- A magnetic energy that is still untapped;
- Wind energy possible on the shores of Lake Tanganyika and on plateaus;
- Great potential for developing solar energy.
Burundi has a wide range of mineral resources: nickel, phosphates, carbonates, vanadium, limestone and peat. These are especially exploited in a traditional and informal way. Modern industries are non-existent. This situation is partly due to the lack of infrastructure and adequate energy supply. The international financial crisis has also impacted negatively on the mining production, which decreased substantially in 2009 and 2010 after peaking in 2008.
Structuring and modernizing the mining sector can present opportunities for significant export replacing handicraft activities. A remarkable added value can be expected especially from the industrial extraction of nickel due to its high price on global market. In order to support investments in this area, the Government has implemented different incentive mechanisms and has revised the legislative framework provided for by the Mining Code.
- The mining activity is still traditional thus, it is an opportunity for potential investors;
- There are some mining conventions for exploration of gold and nickel, but the market remains open;
- The exploration of hydrocarbons in Lake Tanganyika is under consideration.