AfDB funds Kenya-Ethiopia power project

powercable sxcThe African Development Bank’s (AfDB) African Development Fund Board has approved a sum of US$348mn for a US$1.26bn power project between Kenya and Ethiopia

The project will involve the construction of a 1,068km high-voltage direct current 500kV transmission line between the two countries. It will be due for commissioning in November 2017.

It will also include putting up of associated converter stations at Wolayta-Sodo (Ethiopia) and Suswa (Kenya), with a power transfer capacity of up to 2,000MW.

The project will aim at promoting power trade and regional integration, contributing to the Eastern Africa Power Pool (EAPP) countries’ social and economic development.

Gabriel Negatu, AfDB regional director in charge of East Africa, said, “With the approval of this project, we have solidified our position as the key strategic partner for East African countries in the power sector. Our involvement in the project includes a role in the preparation of the project and financing some of the feasibility studies required to appraise the project.”

The project will be taken up at a time when electricity demand in the East African region has steadily risen relative to supply, leading to occasional severe power shortages.

The World Bank, the French Development Agency (AFD) and the two governments of Kenya and Ethiopia, will co-finance the project.

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