Namibia and Europe forms green hydrogen alliance

Embracing green hydrogen
The Namibian Ports Authority has teamed up with the Port of Antwerp-Brugess to complement and collaborate in the development of a green hydrogen supply chain.
Nikanor Nangolo
The Namibian Ports Authority (Namport), announced that it has formed an alliance with the Port of Antwerp-Brugess to complement and collaborate in the development of a green hydrogen supply chain between Namibia and Europe, through the Port of Walvis Bay.

According to Namport's CEO Andrew Kanime, the move will see the commencement of studies, the development of a roadmap and eventually the business case to put up all the requisite infrastructure, facilities and processes. "It is now common cause that Namibia, underpinned by the fact that it has a lot of sun, seawater and wind, has been identified as one of the most attractive and cost-effective hubs for the production of green hydrogen. Europe's decision to shift focus from its traditional suppliers of energy and migration to renewable and clean alternatives could therefore not have been at a more opportune time for Namibia's goal to be the regional green hydrogen hub and will certainly be catalyzed by this increased demand and opportunities."

Kanime expsressed the hope that with the operationalization of the memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the EU and Namibia, that the EU will facilitate the realization of Namibia's audacious goal to be the energy hub for the region, and complement Namibia's and Namport's drive towards becoming the international logistics hub for the region.

He added that Namport is therefore excited about the great prospects which are presented by this development. "We have hence been seized with the task of ensuring that Namport is ably and timely positioned to provide the requisite support in the handling, processing, storage and export of green hydrogen molecules to the EU and other markets. This is aligned with our strategic intent of positioning Namibian seaports to become industrial centers in the country,"

Kanime said that Namport is looking at handling the exports out of Walvis Bay through the North Port and this will require the development of a Multi-Purpose terminal. "Namport would be amenable to EU funding for the terminal and are open to engaging on the possible funding structure or format. it is our pleasure to report that we have already commenced discussions and entered into an agreement with the EU-domiciled CMB Tech, alongside their local partner, the Olthaver and List Group for the development of a green hydrogen terminal at the North Port."

According to Kanime, preparations for the implementation of the project are at an advanced stage with the construction of the pilot plant scheduled to commence this year still. "For the Port of Luderitz, following the selection of Hyphen as Namibia's partner for the development of the country's green hydrogen industry, we have partnered with the Port of Rotterdam to essentially mirror our arrangements at the Port of Walvis Bay with the Port of Antwerp-Brugess."

He added that Namport and Namibia can without doubt affirm their readiness and are geared for the partnership and the mutually beneficial opportunities that are presented by the EU-Africa's Partnership for the Global Gateway Infrastructure Investment Programme. "We are ideally positioned to provide the springboard for the further development of the already established and functional transport corridors into the hinterland, giving EU access to partners for important critical raw materials. Equally importantly, we are also directly a competent and capable partner to provide the much-needed alternative supply of clean energy and some of the support raw materials."

European Commissioner Thierry Breton said that Europe is keen on supporting and partnering African countries such as Namibia and is pleased to have partnered with Namport for the development of the green hydrogen supply chain. "Europe is one of the biggest investors in Africa if not the biggest. I know this because I am from Senegal and I have seen the support Europe has rendered to some African countries". According to him,

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