AfDB Funds Transmission Project in Ethiopia

The bank has approved US$104 million in financing.

By Liz Bains on
15th September 2023

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved US$104 million in financing to support a transmission project in Ethiopia.

The project involves the construction of 157km of 400kV double-circuit transmission lines and associated substations at Harar, Jijiga and Fafem. 

The investment will boost the power transfer capacity in the eastern part of Ethiopia and serve as a take-off point for a future power interconnection to Somalia.

The financing includes a US$52 million grant from the African Development Fund, the group’s concessional lending arm and a US$52 million soft loan drawn from South Korea’s Economic Development Cooperation Fund.

“Improving the power grid in the east of the country will address brownouts and load shedding in the region, connect more industries and households to the electricity network, and eliminate the use of diesel generators, which currently provide a basic electricity supply,” said Batchi Baldeh, director of power systems development at the AfDB.

The investment also supports an educational component to the project, with 200 students to be offered six-month placements during the construction phase, and 30 students to be offered grants to attend training courses in the energy sector.

The AfDB says the project will facilitate the launch of the government’s regional agricultural irrigation programme targeting 462,174 hectares currently under design, which is key to tackling the region’s food-security challenge as well as providing adequate fodder for livestock.

Photo: Transmission towers © Igor Smichkov | Dreamstime)

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