Last weekend, the Ethiopian Electric Utility (EEU) held celebrations at its primary data centre located in Addis Ababa to officially inaugurate the new SAP ERP system.
The ribbon-cutting ceremony was attended by honorary guest, State Minister of the Energy Sector within the Ministry of Water, Irrigation and Electricity for Ethiopia Dr Frehiwot Woldehanna, as well as several other dignitaries and senior executives including – Dr.-Ing.Getahun Mekuria, Minister of Education for Ethiopia and Board Chairman of EEU, Shiferaw Telila, CEO of EEU; Sudarshan Shapurkar, Tech Mahindra Head of Delivery for the Middle East and Africa; Prasad Kotikela, Tech Mahindra Head of Africa and Pedro Guerreiro, Managing Director of SAP Central Africa.
The celebration, which marked the official go-live of the SAP system, heralded a new era of efficiency and accountability in the EEU’s billing and reporting capability. It is another step in the ongoing commitment of the Ethiopian government to improve the overall economics and service of the electricity supply industry.
One Indian and four Chinese firms have secured a project to upgrade electric power distribution lines in six regional towns at a cost of 80 million dollars. Ethiopian Electric Utility awarded the companies with contracts to rehabilitate and upgrade 1,265.6Km of power distribution lines in Wolaita Sodo, Harar, Shashamane, Debre Marqos, Adigrat and Gonder with the tenders divided into three lots. The companies are expected to complete and deliver the project in 18 months.
For the first lot, which consists of the upgrading of power lines in Wolaita Sodo and Harar, two Chinese companies, HHCC and CICC, were awarded. For the second lot that will upgrade the electric power lines in Shashamane and Debre Marqos, Jiangsu Ettern, CICC and China Construction Civil Engineering (CCCE) secured the contract.
Ethiopia and China have signed a partnership agreement to invest in energy transmission and distribution lines for the nation's mega projects. The project will build power transmission and distribution lines to 16 industrial parks, part of the Meqelle to Djibouti railway line and to other cities in the country.
The agreement was signed last week as part of the second Belt & Road Forum for International Cooperation held in Beijing, China. Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD) had traveled to Beijing to attend the Forum with Ethiopian delegates. The Forum has also brought the news about China's cancellation of all interest-free loans it had advanced to Ethiopia through the end of 2018.
Ethiopia on Friday inaugurated a Chinese-built power distribution, rehabilitation and upgrading project. The project, which is part of larger nationwide program involving eight major cities, will mainly benefit the grid system of the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa.
The seven other cities are Jimma, Dire Dawa, Bahir Dar, Mekele, Hawassa, Adama and Dessie. Ethiopian State Minister of Water, Irrigation and Electricity Frehiwot Woldehanna told the inauguration ceremony that the newly inaugurated project will have a "great significance to Ethiopia's development endeavor."
"Despite various achievements over the past years, Ethiopia still has huge deficiencies in terms of access to electric energy," he said, adding that the government considers access to electric energy as "a prerequisite to socioeconomic development."