The Saudi Arabian power company that just one month ago won a contract to develop two solar farms, which will have 250MW in combined capacity, has already commenced mobilizing for the project. ACWA Power, which will develop a power plant with its own 300 million dollars in financing, started clearing the two sites and hiring employees that will engage in the development of the projects. One of the projects, Gad, is located 40Km from Dire Dawa in Somali Regional State, while the other project, Dicheto, is found 90Km from the town of Semera, close to the border with Djibouti in Afar Regional State.
The agreement for the two projects was signed early last week between Ahmed Shide, minister of Finance and the chairperson of the Private Public Partnership (PPP) Board, and Paddy Padmanathan, CEO and President of ACWA. Ethiopian Electric Power has also joined the two parties in signing the contractual agreement that will last for 15 to 20 years. The Saudi Arabian firm will develop the two solar farms on the land provided by the government of Ethiopia. The company won the bid after vying with four other companies that made it into the screening stage. Initially, a total of 12 pre-qualified prospective bidders took part in the bidding process after being shortlisted by the board of the PPP directorate.
A Saudi Arabian energy company , ACWA Power is ahead of the competition in a bid to win a deal with the Ethiopian government to build an industrial scale solar park, which will be the first of its kind for the country. If awarded, the company will bring in its own financing to build solar power plant in two locations, each generating 125MW of power that will be sold to Ethiopian electric power, EEP.
ACWA Power placed its financial offer of 0.025 dolars a kilowatt-hour on Friday, September 5, 2019, through the independent power purchase agreement framework. Four other international power companies bidding against ACWA Power were excluded due to non-compliance with the requirement. On Tuesday, they were issued letters of notice by the public private partnership directorate, under the ministry of finance.
Tourists will pay certain amount on top of visa fee.
A new bill that will introduce an ecotax, a tax levied on activities considered harmful to the environment, is in the making. Drafted by the Environment, Forest & Climate Change Commission, the bill has been in the making for the past five months and is expected to be tabled to the Council of Ministers this week. It will form the Eco-Fund, which will be reporting to the Prime Minister and will be tasked with administering the funds collected through the scheme. The Fund will be treated separately and be used for environmental protection.
Dubbed the Eco-system Service Payment, the proclamation is aimed at promoting environment-friendly activities through economic incentives. It will collect funds in two ways: through a green tax and an eco-system service fee; both will be treated separately with two new directives that will follow the legislation of the proclamation. The green tax mainly targets pollutants that affect the environment in different ways and the collected taxes will be directed to environmental rehabilitation. It will be imposed on fossil fuels, petroleum, mining and the usage of pesticides, among others.
An eco-system service fee will be imposed on companies and service providers that base their business on natural resources. It is applied with a baseline contract to be signed with these businesses to make them contribute to the preservation and conservation of natural resources. It applies to national parks, water bottlers, private or public dam owners, genetic resources, and businesses in the tourism sector.