Ministry of Water, Irrigation and Electricity has signed MoU with Gulf Electricity Interconnection Authority and the International Energy Linking Organization (GEIDCO) to start feasibility study of electricity link between Ethiopia and the Gulf Cooperation Council countries. The MoU was signed on Saturday, January 12, 2019 in Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), according to the online newspaper Sabq-sa.com.
Water, Irrigation and Electricity Minister Engineer Sileshi Bekele said on the occasion the interconnection of energy between countries, regions and continents is one of the most important ways to unite people for mutual benefit and economic prosperity.
The issues surrounding lighting Africa can seem daunting and, if not for key success stories, even insurmountable. But Kenya’s recent success — going from a mere 25 percent electricity access rate to 73 percent in just six years — has been so out of line with normal trends that the World Bank’s reports on Sub Saharan Africa show electrification rates outpacing population growth for the first time. The metric, the Bank says, is being disproportionally driven by Kenya. The Kenya story clearly shows that these problems can and should be tackled.
Kenya has achieved substantial progress in economic, social, and human development over the past decade. Significant progress has also been made in the energy sector. For instance, Kenya has been taking advantage of its rich renewable resources and has emerged as one of the global leaders in the use of geothermal resources as a clean fuel for power generation.
Thanks to strong government leadership, as well as private sector investment and support from development partners, Kenya has also experienced an impressive expansion of access to electricity. Kenya now has the highest electricity access rate in East Africa: total access stands at 75% both from grid and off-grid solutions, according to the recent Multi-Tier Framework Energy Access Survey Report.
Your power bill could rise further by as much as 70 per cent as the Government moves to raise additional revenue to sustain idle plants. The Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) has expressed concerns about the number of planned power projects, saying the current pace in growing electricity generation by far outpaces demand. This is even as power-intensive industries fail to set up in the country at the expected pace.
The current state of affairs, the regulator cautions, could have the impact of further pushing up power costs as consumers are made to pay for idle power plants, burdening them further as they are already reeling from the high cost of energy. ERC now wants different power producers to slow down on the construction of plants to ensure that supply matches demand. A report by the regulator released yesterday shows that over the next six years, power producers could have a generating capacity of 43 per cent and prices could go up by as much as 70 per cent. Among the power plants that the regulator wants to be slowed down are the controversial Lamu coal plant, the much-hyped nuclear power plant, and a host of geothermal plants planned by State-owned KenGen and other independent power producers.