Ethiopia has ambitious plans for renewable energy. Since 2017, Enel Green Power has been working alongside the Addis Ababa government to support sustainable development and the energy transition. The future of Ethiopia depends on the sun that lights its highlands, the wind that blows through its forests and the force of its rivers. The country is rich in sources of renewable energy. If taken advantage of, they can help build a sustainable tomorrow.
Aware of the country’s potential, the Addis Ababa government launched an ambitious plan in 2016 to speed up the energy transition and support the construction of plants that use the country’s abundant renewable sources. The Growth and Transformation Plan 2 involves the construction of 13.7 GW of new renewable capacity from sources other than hydroelectric in the coming years, in order to diversify the Ethiopian energy generation mix.
Effective September 27, 2018, importers of solar energy appliances are no longer subject to quality assessment processes and invoice guarantee payments. The Ministry of Trade exempted importers from payments made to obtain import authorisation certifications. For sample during inspection processes, importers were expected to pay 19,000 Br and deposit 0.5pc of the total import value as an invoice guaranty.
Solar panels, batteries, battery chargers, controllers and power inverters had previously been mandated to pass through conformity assessment procedures at custom clearance points that inspect the quality of the products. As of the end of September, the companies will avoid this inspection process. However, they will still be required to bring products on par with international conformity certificate standards. Currently, a total of 386 solar equipment importers are operating in the country.
Amid budgetary support, the World Bank Group (WBG) has approved a commitment of USD 1.2 billion to Ethiopia this week, the International Finance Corporation (IFC) – the private sector arm of the WB – said that it is working on a solar power program that will help generate 500 megawatt of electricity in the country. In an exclusive interview with The Reporter, Sergio Pimenta, vice president of IFC in the Middle East and Africa said that IFC is running a program called “Scaling Solar” in which the development financier will scale-up investments for the production of 500MW of solar power.
“IFC has launched scaling solar in Ethiopia. The project’s total scale arrays up to 500 megawatts (MW) and the first phase is 250MW. Once completed the solar project is going to be the largest in Africa,” said Sergio Pimenta.
The Ethiopian Electric Power (EEP) and Enel Green Power (EGP), the Italian company that is set to sign a power purchase agreement to develop a 100MW solar power plant near Metehara town in the Oromia Regional State at a cost of 120 million USD, are going to acquire land from the regional state.
In October 2017 EEP announced that the leading European renewable energy developer, Enel Green Power, has won the bid to build a 100MW solar power plant near Metehara town, located 230km east of Addis Ababa in East Shoa Zone. The area enjoys high levels of solar radiation. The company would build, own and operate the solar power plant. According to the draft agreement, EEP would buy all the electric power generated by Enel Green Power for 20 years.