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Here Are Africa’s Leaders In Green Energy

Africa is set to drive global population growth over the next few decades but access to electricity in Africa is a challenge: According to the International Energy Agency, 600 million people in sub-Saharan Africa lack access to electricity.

Access to reliable, affordable and sustainable energy — as laid out in the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal Seven — will be crucial when to it comes to meeting other Sustainable Development Goals and tackling climate change.

Here, CNBC’s “Sustainable Energy” takes a look at the continent’s leaders in renewable energy capacity according to statistics from the International Renewable Energy Association (IRENA).

Capacity, according to IRENA, refers to “the maximum net generating capacity of power plants and other installations that use renewable energy sources to produce electricity.” The capacity figures relate to power plants and other installations that utilize renewables to generate electricity.

(10) Sudan: 2,136 MW

Hydropower is the main source of renewable electricity generation in Sudan, producing 8,051 gigawatt hours (GWh) in 2016, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA).

(9) Nigeria: 2,143 MW

Despite being an oil rich member of OPEC, Nigeria – the most populous country in Africa – is home to “an abundance of various renewable energy resources” including solar, wind and small hydro power, according to the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission.

Work needs to be done to exploit these resources, however. To this end, the government wants renewables to make up 30% of the country’s electricity mix by 2030.

(8) Mozambique: 2,235 MW

Construction work on Mozambique’s first large-scale solar facility, a 40 MW plant near the city of Mocuba, started in 2018, according to solar firm Scatec Solar.

It’s estimated that, once complete, the plant will generate 79 GWh of electricity per year and help to power 175,000 homes.

(7) Zambia: 2,446 MW

Zambia is heavily reliant on hydropower, which generated 11,025 GWh in 2016, according to the IEA.

Change is taking place, though. In April 2019, the green energy subsidiary of Italian energy giant Enel started operations at a 34-megawatt (MW) solar plant, its first in the country.

Once fully operational, the power plant is set to produce 70 GWh every year, according to Enel.

(6) Democratic Republic of the Congo: 2,750 MW

A vast country, the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s biggest renewable source is hydropower, which generated 9,099 GWh in 2016, according to the IEA.

The United States Agency for International Development has said that the country could potentially “install up to 100,000 MW of hydropower capacity.”

(5) Angola: 2,763 MW

Like Nigeria, Angola is a member of OPEC and a major oil producer.

The country is also a significant force in hydropower, with generation from that source hitting 4.95 terawatt hours in 2016, according to the International Hydropower Association.

(4) Morocco: 3,263 MW

Morocco boasts the planet’s biggest concentrating solar park which according to the IEA illustrates its “ambition and technological capability.”

The country also has several wind farms, including the 300 MW Tarfaya facility, which is located on its southwest coast and can power 1.5 million homes, according to Siemens.

(3) Ethiopia: 4,351 MW

With over 4,000 MW of capacity, Ethiopia places third when it comes to renewable energy capacity in Africa, according to IRENA.

The country is part of the World Bank’s Scaling Solar program, which has the goal of making “privately funded grid-connected solar projects operational within two years and at competitive tariffs.”

(2) Egypt: 4,813 MW

Egypt has potential when it comes to renewables. In October 2018, IRENA said that Egypt could supply 53% of its electricity mix using renewables by 2030.

In April 2019, Norwegian developer Scatec Solar announced that the first part of its 400 MW Benban solar facility had been connected to the grid and commenced commercial operations.

Once finished, the Benban project will have 1.5 GW of capacity. Scatec is the largest contributor to the project.

(1) South Africa 6,065 MW

South Africa is the continent’s leader when it comes to renewable energy capacity, according to IRENA’s figures.

It is home to a number of solar power plants, including the 96 MW Jasper plant, a photovoltaic facility with 325,360 panels that can supply power to 80,000 homes.

When it comes to wind power, onshore installations in South Africa amounted to 2,085 MW in 2018, according to the Global Wind Energy Council.

The South African Wind Energy Association states that wind power accounts for 52% of the country’s renewable energy power supply, while the average size of a South African wind power facility is 93.5 MW.

Renewable Energy Employed 11m People Worldwide In 2018

Eleven million people were employed in renewable energy worldwide in 2018, IRENA's latest report on global jobs reveals. This compares with 10.3 million in 2017.

As more and more countries manufacture, trade and install renewable energy technologies, the latest Renewable Energy and Jobs – Annual Review finds that renewables jobs grew to their highest level despite slower growth in key renewable energy markets including China.

Solar photovoltaic (PV) and wind remain the most dynamic of all renewable energy industries. Accounting for one-third of the total renewable energy workflow, solar PV retains the top spot in 2018, ahead of hydropower, liquid biofuels and wind power. Geographically, Asia hosts over three million PV jobs, or nearly nine-tenths of the global total.

Most of the wind industry's activity still occurs on land and is responsible for the bulk of the sector's 1.2 million jobs. China alone accounts for 44 per cent of global wind employment, followed by Germany and the United States. Offshore wind could be an especially attractive option for leveraging domestic capacity and exploiting synergies with the oil and gas industry.

Key Findings

  • The solar PV industry retains the top spot, with a third of the total renewable energy workforce. In 2018, PV employment expanded in India, Southeast Asia and Brazil, while China, the United States, Japan and the European Union lost jobs.
  • Rising output pushed biofuel jobs up 6% to 2.1 million. Brazil, Colombia, and Southeast Asia have labour-intensive supply chains where informal work is prominent, whereas operations in the United States and the European Union are far more mechanised.
  • Employment in wind power supports 1.2 million jobs. Onshore projects predominate, but the offshore segment is gaining traction and could build on expertise and infrastructure in the offshore oil and gas sector.
  • Hydropower employs 2.1 million people directly, three quarters of whom are in operations and maintenance. The sector has the largest installed capacity of all renewables but is now expanding slowly.

Angola Is Next In Line For South African Energy Companies' Regional Expansion

As Angola works in attracting foreign investors from the Americas, Europe, the Middle East and Asia, its closest African neighbours are also entering the race to tap into vast investment opportunities in Africa's second biggest oil producing market.

Beyond the traditional African oil players, most of them coming from Nigeria, South African companies have increasingly showed interest in regionalizing and expanding their businesses beyond their home country. President João Lourenço chose South Africa as his first state visit destination as President, which was followed in 2018 by a South African trade and investment mission to Luanda.

While Mozambique's LNG mega projects are seen for many South African construction, services and supply companies as very attractive and nearby opportunities, a sizeable and expanding market like Angola has also appeared on their radar in recent years.

It is notably the case of South Africa's state-owned giants like the Central Energy Fund (CEF), in charge of both developing a robust domestic energy market and securing the energy supplies South Africa needs to support its growing economy.

Under the Integrated Resources Plan set to be adopted by the country this year, 8,100MW of additional gas-to-power capacity is to be added in South Africa by 2030. South Africa also remains sub-Saharan Africa's largest refiner and is planning additional refining and petrochemicals units that will all require crude oil and natural gas supplies that do not exist domestically.

It is hence no surprise that Angola, with its lucrative opportunities and reformed business environment, will be hosting a strong delegation of South African companies during the upcoming Angola Oil & Gas Conference 2019, set to be held in Luanda on June 4-6. The summit is organized by Africa Oil & Power and endorsed by the Ministry of Mineral Resources and Petroleum of Angola.

"The economic reforms passed by President Lourenço and the opening of wide swaths of oil and gas acreage constitute the single biggest exploration opportunity in the history of Angola," said Guillaume Doane, CEO of Africa Oil & Power. "This is a new era for Angola that will herald the arrival of several new entrants to the market."

Amongst the new entrants, the Strategic Fuel Fund (SFF), a CEF group company, will be present to look into the various licenses and blocks Angola has to offer. The state-owned entity already recently became owner and operator of South Sudan's Block B2 under an exploration & production sharing agreement (EPSA) signed in Juba this month, and is keen to continue securing additional assets and reserves across Africa's key oil markets that can benefit South Africans.

"The Strategic Fuel Fund seeks to invest in and acquire key oil & gas assets across Africa that can be of important interest to the host countries and South Africa" declared Godfrey Moagi, CEO of the SFF. "In our quest for attractive assets with vast resource potential, we believe Angola offers the right kind of environment, mature fields and political leadership needed to realize successful ventures."

Angola has indeed just released a new oil licensing strategy up to 2025, and is about to launch for the first time a bidding round that includes marginal oil fields with an attractive fiscal framework. Oil concessions are now overseen by a new and independent agency, the ANPG, which took this responsibility over from state-owned Sonangol in a move to make the process more efficient and transparent.

"The ambitious reform agenda of President João Laurenço and Minister of Mineral Resources and Petroleum Dr. Diamantino Pedro Azevedo is proving successful in building up investors' trust and confidence," said Centurion Law Group CEO and AEC Executive Chairman NJ Ayuk. "It is very encouraging to see major African players coming to Angola from across the continent. This is very promising for the growing African energy cooperation and the development of our industry."

The African Energy Chamber (AEC) is the only Africa-wide association that represents all aspects of Africa's oil and gas industry. The AEC represents more than 120 partner companies involved in all aspects of the African energy industry. Its Angola operations are overseen and represented by Sergio Pugliese.

Whitepaper Discusses Direction Of The Energy Industry

Global and regional energy industry trends are continuously shifting and stakeholders need to stay constantly informed to better understand the key drivers of change. As the 19th edition of the Africa Utility week and PowerGEN event kicks off, GE unveiled a whitepaper on Re-imagining the future of power in Sub-Saharan Africa.

This paper, developed by the Strategic Marketing unit of GE in Sub-Saharan Africa focuses on the changing trends and future direction of the energy industry as it explores the relevance and impact of key drivers both regionally and globally.

Key themes discussed in the paper include decarbonization, decentralization and digitization as well as how they affect the current and future energy transformations in the region.

The paper also sheds light on the rise of renewables including solar, wind and hydro and the place of geothermal in Sub Saharan Africa’s energy mix. The whitepaper also discusses energy sector management, financing and regulatory frameworks that create an enabling environment for the sector.

Sub-Saharan Africa needs power and there is seemingly an over-dependence on governments to resolve this energy dilemma. Governments are faced with investment, policy and regulatory framework challenges that oftentimes hinder their ability to fulfill the responsibility of providing affordable and reliable power.

With increasingly diverse funding from public and private sources, including innovative partnerships with private investors and independent power producers (IPPs), the current narrative that two out of three people in the region needs access to electricity is expected to change.

“To solve Africa’s energy deficit and improve energy access, there is a clear need for solutions that foster collaboration through partnerships with governments, technology providers and the private sector” said Elisee Sezan, CEO for GE’s Gas Power business in Sub-Saharan Africa.

“GE has been at the forefront of driving this collaboration which has resulted in significant milestone projects and solid partnerships that have successfully added more megawatts to the grid. We are delighted to lead this changing narrative on powering Africa forward and are committed to supporting energy initiatives to accelerate its progress” he added.

Africa Utility Week brings together utilities, financiers and energy leaders from across the region to discuss and develop technical knowledge in the field of electricity generation, transmission and distribution.

Former BP & Equinor Executive To Lead The African Energy Chamber In Angola

The African Energy Chamber is pleased to announce that it has appointed Mr. Sergio Pugliese as President for Angola, effective May 1st 2019. 

In this role, Mr. Pugliese will lead the chamber's activities in Angola and support the Chambers' partners in unlocking value in Angola's multi-billion-dollar oil and gas market.

Mr. Pugliese will also lead the chamber's efforts to support the government of His Excellency President João Lourenço in its current drive to restructure and strengthen Angola's oil & gas sector.

Mr. Pugliese is a seasoned entrepreneur and Angolan oil executive with multiple years of experience gathered working with international oil companies BP and Statoil. He also founded and is the Executive Chairman of Angola-focused oil & gas services companies Motiva LDA and Amipa LDA, and Africa-focused investment company AIDAC. 

"Sergio's credentials, experience and knowledge of the oil and gas industry make him the ideal addition for the African Energy Chamber as we increase our footprint in every oil producing country," declared NJ Ayuk, CEO of Centurion Law Group and Executive Chairman at the Chamber. 

"The Chamber notably continues to receive tremendous interest from the international oil community about Angola since the election of President João Lourenço," commented Verner Ayukegba, Senior Vice President of Public Policy.

"From the passing of dedicated gas regulations, the promotion of marginal fields, to the organization of a new oil-licensing round overseen by the newly-created Petroleum Agency, Angola has made a tremendous comeback as one of Africa's hottest oil & gas frontier." 

"It is with pleasure and a great sense of responsibility towards Angola and the Africa Energy Chamber that I am assuming this new function," declared Sergio Pugliese. "Angola is reforming very fast and the need to provide accurate information and guidance for investors on doing business in Angola is growing. 

As the African Energy Chamber develops its network in Angola, we truly look forward to facilitating more investment into the market for the creation of good paying jobs in Angola.

We invite the world to join us in Luanda next month on June 4-6 at the Centro de Convenções Talatona (CCTA) for the first ever edition of the Angola Oil & Gas Conference 2019.

The first edition of the conference is endorsed by the Ministry of Mineral Resources and Petroleum of the Republic of Angola and will notably see the launch of the country's first marginal fields bidding round." 

Why New 'Solar Superpowers' Will Probably Be Petro-States In The Gulf

Every now and then, the idea of powering Europe using the vast solar resources of the Sahara Desert comes up. Were this to actually happen, we may witness the rise of new energy superpowers in Northern Africa. But a look at the economic and political energy system suggests what's more likely is the oil-rich countries of the Arabian (or Persian) Gulf will continue to dominate energy trade even in the post-fossil era.

Renewable energy, of course, is very location dependent – the sunnier a place is, the more energy you get out of photovoltaic panels. Over the course of a year, southern Algeria, for example, gets more than twice as much solar energy as southern England. The graph below, which I put together as part of my PhD, shows that some of the best solar resources in the world are indeed found in Algeria, Libya, Egypt, Niger, Chad and Sudan.

Russia and Canada have lots of low-solar land, but the most sunny areas are elsewhere. Denes Csala / NREL , Author provided

So, one could build large Saharan solar farms and then transmit the power back to densely populated areas of Europe. Such a project would need to overcome various technical challenges, but we can say that in theory it is possible , even if not practical.

Yet plans to actually set up mass Saharan solar have floundered. The most notable project, Desertec , was fairly active until the mid 2010s, when a collapse in the price of oil and natural gas made its business case more difficult. At that time, the major technology considered was concentrated solar power , where you use the heat from the sun to run a steam turbine. Energy can be stored as heat overnight, therefore enabling uninterrupted energy supply and making it preferred to then expensive batteries.

Solar is getting cheaper and cheaper. Nature

Since then, however, the cost of both solar panels and battery storage have dropped drastically . But, while conditions might look favourable for Saharan solar, it is unlikely that new solar energy kingpins will arise in North Africa. Instead, we should look one desert further to the East – the Rub al Khali on the Arabian peninsula, the home of the reigning energy powers.

Sun shines on the Gulf

The economies of the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the other Gulf nations are built around energy exports. And as climate change imposes pressure on the extraction of fossil fuels, these countries will have to look for alternative energy (and income) sources in order to keep their economies afloat. The International Renewable Energy Agency set up its headquarters in Abu Dhabi, and the region has no shortage of ambitious solar projects promising extremely cheap electricity . However only a small amount of capacity has actually been deployed so far. Low oil revenues have not helped with the megaprojects. 

Countries in the Sahara also have little history of trading fossil fuels, outside of Libya and Algeria, while things are rather different for the petro-states of the Gulf. And this matters because, in the energy business, worries over longer-term security of supply mean countries tend to trade with the same partners.

This would be the Achilles' heel of a Northern African energy project: the connections to Europe would likely be the continent's single most important critical infrastructure and, considering the stability of the region, it is unlikely that European countries would take on such a risk.

Which brings us to an alternative way to transmit energy: hydrogen. A process called electrolysis can use renewable electricity to split water into hydrogen and oxygen, and the resulting hydrogen can store lots of energy. Soon it will become feasible to move energy around the world in this form, using shipping infrastructure similar to that already in use today for liquefied natural gas.

Sure, there are disadvantages compared to batteries. It would mean introducing two more conversion stages and thus reduced efficiency ( 30% roundtrip efficiency compared to 80% for batteries), but it would overcome the distance barrier. And perhaps just as importantly: shipping energy by hydrogen would mean no significant change to the existing maritime trade infrastructure, which will hand an advantage to established energy exporters.

If this means the Sahara is unlikely to develop renewable energy superpowers, then perhaps this is for the better. With the booming populations of Sub-Saharan Africa in dire need of electrification, clean solar power might be better used to alleviate the energy crisis in somewhere like Nigeria rather than sent to Europe. While these countries may eventually be able to shake off any solar resource curse , in the short term, exports like these could just look like yet another European attempt to extract natural resources from Africans .

Author: Dénes Csala

SOURCE: MENAFN

Uganda Needs More Nuclear Scientists

Uganda and African countries need more scientists trained in the use of nuclear science whose use is growing globally. Nuclear science and technology involves the study and use of nuclear energy which is a clean source of energy and for other purposes such as medical treatment for cancer.

Nuclear power plays an important role in providing large amounts of clean and reliable electricity to support the growing energy needs cheaply.

The Minister of Energy and Mineral Development Eng. Irene Muloni while addressing the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Ministerial Conference on Nuclear Science and Technology said that in view of advancement in nuclear energy applications in terms of technology and quantity, there is need to match the human resources capacity with the infrastructure development.

The conference was held under the theme: ‘Addressing Current and Emerging Development Challenges’ in Vienna, Austria, recently.

“In Africa little is known about the positive contribution of nuclear energy. I  would  like  to  reaffirm Uganda’s  commitment towards strengthening  the  national  infrastructure  for nuclear  safety,  security  and  safeguards,” Eng. Muloni said.

The conference aimed at facilitating high-level dialogue among participants on nuclear science, technology and applications for peaceful uses, and on their delivery to IAEA member states, mainly through the agency's technical cooperation programme, while highlighting their future contribution to sustainable development.

With reference to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, the Minister of Energy and Mineral Development reiterated the inalienable right of state parties to develop research, produce and use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.

PEACEFUL NUCLEAR USE OFFER SOLUTIONS

Eng. Muloni added that global cooperation on the peaceful use of nuclear science and technology over the years has provided solutions to a number of challenges facing humanity in the areas of: - human health, agricultural productivity, water resource management, environmental restoration and energy. The minister commended the agency for the continuous technical assistance to member states to benefit from the peaceful use of nuclear energy.

She applauded the agency for the contribution towards the restoration of radiotherapy services at the Uganda Cancer Institute.

Notably, the application of nuclear science and technology can be used to facilitate the attainment of nine of the seventeen Sustainable Development Goals. In light of this the use of nuclear energy to address socio-economic challenges to humanity is on the increase.

During the conference the minister held bilateral discussions with IAEA director general, Yukiya Amano and the director TCAF, division for Africa in the department of Technical Cooperation Shaukat Abdulrazak on enhancing technical cooperation in the expansion of radiotherapy centers, strengthening food safety laboratory, nuclear power infrastructure development and capacity building in nuclear science and technology.

PRODUCING 2,000 MEGAWATTS OF POWER

In the next 10 to 15 years, Uganda plans to produce 2,000 megawatts of power from nuclear power plants. Uganda Vision 2040 identifies inadequate supply of modern energy services as a key bottleneck for sustainable development. Uganda huge deposits of uranium which can be used to fuel nuclear power plants.

South Africa has two nuclear reactors generating 5% of its electricity with plans to increase its use. Over 11% of the world’s electricity today is produced from nuclear energy.

The Government of Uganda through the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Russian State Atomic Energy Corporation (ROSATOM) on cooperation in the peaceful uses of atomic energy on June 19th 2017 in Moscow.

The document set out a framework for co-operation with a focus on development of nuclear power infrastructure in Uganda and the uses of radioisotopes and radiation technologies, applications in industry, medicine, agriculture and other areas.

The memorandum covered collaboration on human resource education and training, nuclear research centers, nuclear energy among others.

 

Solar Sector Must Overcome Quality Problems

The use of solar in Uganda is increasing, moving on from being only a source for lighting to other uses like powering agribusiness and other alternative uses, Mr. Amos Tamusuza, the acting Principal Energy Officer at Ministry Of Energy And Mineral Development (MEMD) told a media training in Kampala.

The growth in solar consumption is however being slowed and challenged by the rampant existence of fake solar products on the market. Mr. Tamusuza noted that because of fake and poor quality products sold to unsuspecting customers, many people say solar technology doesn’t work.

The integrity of persons dealing in solar products is also lacking. This, he said hampers solar uptake. He revealed that renewable energy mix on the national grid was expected to grow from 4 percent to 60 percent but has only managed to grow to 40 percent.

Association To Address Poor Standards

The other challenge has been insufficient awareness and promotion of solar across the country. This has left consumers of solar ignorant and cheated by rogue traders. To address these problems, the ministry facilitated the formation an association that would bring all traders dealing in solar energy.

“We found out that if we are a well-organized body, we can build a vibrant sector. We had to bring these people together,” Mr. Tamusuza stated. And with that in mind, Uganda Solar Energy Association (USEA) was born – to help the ministry in positioning solar energy first.

“Solar was expensive but now the prices are coming down but we feel the costs are still higher. It has become more affordable and usage of solar has increased especially in rural areas. We are happy for that. Companies are enabling customers to pay in instalments but we still have quality problems. The integrity of dealers is lacking,” Mr. Tamusuza narrated.

To fight poor quality products on the market, Mr. Tamusuza is of the view that for anybody to get a licence from the energy minister to sell solar products must be a member of the Uganda Solar Energy Association. This way, the association can monitor the quality members are putting on the market through adhering to an ethical code of conduct that must be followed.

 

The association is also working with several partners including United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF), USAID, UKAID, World Bank and government of Uganda to deepen solar uptake.

Access To Clean Energy Still Hard

Mr. Julius Magala, the Energy Access Coordinator, Clean Start Programme (UNCDF) who opened the media training session, applauded USEA for the initiative and its role in promoting the use of clean energy among Ugandans.

“Access to clean energy remains a challenge for many communities in Uganda and hinders economic development. It’s therefore important that USEA and the media work together to help address the bottlenecks that people face in accessing quality clean energy solutions, if Uganda is to achieve its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)” he said.

“UNCDF is committed to working with USEA to help improve the lives of many Ugandans by promoting and investing in initiatives that promote access and the use of clean energy,” Magala added.

According to a study on the use and Viability of Solar Energy in Uganda by the National Association of Professional Environmentalists, 88% of Ugandans use kerosene for lighting and 79% use firewood for cooking while only 1% use solar energy for the two purposes. The heavy reliance on biomass by the country as a source of energy in day to day life puts the country at risk of environmental degradation and climate change.

Solar Provides Cheap Alternative

Ms. Joyce Nkuyahaga, the Chief Executive Officer of USEA, mentioned that solar provides an alternative source of power especially in rural areas. The main source of power in Uganda is hydroelectricity which has not covered the main parts of rural areas and remains largely expensive. An increase in power tariffs on the national grid to Shs718.9 per kwh made electricity inaccessible.

In the earlier days of solar entering onto the Ugandan market, it was considered expensive but like Mr. Tamusuza and Ms. Nkuyahaga noted, this is changing for the better. Ms. Nkuyahaga reveals that now you can get a solar package of 4 solar lamps, a radio, phone charging at Shs500, 000 with a three year warranty and can last for over ten years. It doesn’t come with monthly tariffs, all you do is put it in the sun for natural recharging.

She further revealed that 500, 000 households have been covered by solar in the past six years while UMEME, the company that distributes electricity on behalf og government has reached only reached 1.3million connections.

And with improvement in solar technology, solar performance has also improved. Consumers are finding alternative uses of solar because increased capacities and efficiency. Today many people are using solar for irrigation and industry use.

At Power Trust Uganda, they are selling a solar milling machine. Such innovations are set to help rural areas where there is no electricity to add value to their farm produce.

Mr. Paul Jack Kulosi, the business development manager at Power Trust said with the solar milling machine one can add value to 800 kilograms of maize that way one can produce food for home use and also get animal feeds.

Siemens, Ethiopia Collaborate To Address Urgent Energy & Infrastructure Challenges

Siemens announced it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia to support the government's objective of becoming a low middle-income country by 2025.

The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) addresses the country's energy and infrastructure sectors. Other key aspects of the agreement include financing concepts that will ensure the long-term sustainability of these infrastructure initiatives; and creating opportunities for local upskilling and job creation during construction and operation.

Ethiopia's Growth and Transformation Plan serves as a catalyst towards realizing its national vision of accelerated and sustained economic growth in order to eradicate poverty and increase prosperity.  "Siemens can make a significant contribution to Ethiopia's development.

We will apply our vast experience and proven technologies as well as training and education capabilities to help shape the future of Ethiopia and its people. One of the starting projects affirming our strong commitment in the region is the East Africa Interconnector," said Joe Kaeser, CEO for Siemens AG.

Siemens is currently helping to increase the reliability of energy supply through an interconnector being built between Kenya and Ethiopia. The roughly 1,000 kilometres-long transmission line will transmit environmentally friendly hydroelectricity from Ethiopia to Kenya. The project currently supports 200 direct jobs in Ethiopia alone and is one of the largest infrastructure projects in Africa.

The primary goal of this agreement is to commit to a long-term partnership between Siemens and the people of Ethiopia to develop, fast track solutions that will enable government to stabilise and expand existing grid infrastructure, explore solutions for industrial parks and co-develop microgrid solutions for remote villages.

Sabine Dall'Omo, Siemens CEO for Southern and Eastern Africa says, "This milestone agreement is another step in demonstrating our strong commitment to the people and government of Ethiopia. We are here today as we have been since 1927, to help achieve affordable and reliable power supply, create jobs, increase access to training and develop local skills alongside local partners."

GE Reinforces Commitment To Improve Energy Access In West Africa

GE to provide energy solutions to help foster economic development and growth in Benin and Cote d'Ivoire; In Benin, GE will supply the nation's first Advanced Distribution Management System (ADMS), this grid solution is expected to increase energy reliability and efficiency; In Cote d'Ivoire, GE will rehabilitate and improve the power capacity of the Ferke, Man and Taabo substations while reducing the losses in energy transmission.

Today, GE Renewable Energy's Grid Solutions business announced that it has signed two deals to build energy systems in Benin and upgrade three substations in Cote d'Ivoire. These agreements align with GE's commitment to providing scalable power solutions in partnership with governments and utilities to meet West Africa's growing energy needs while developing self-sustaining electricity systems for businesses and households in the region.

Benin
In Benin, 85 percent of electricity utilized is currently imported from neighboring countries. To strengthen the country's grid and manage electricity losses that result during energy transmission, GE will design and supply the first Advanced Distribution Management System (ADMS) in Benin for the Société Béninoise d'Energie Electrique (SBEE) and undertake the rehabilitation of substations and telecommunication infrastructure at the National Distribution Control Center in Cotonou.  

Part of GE's Digital Energy portfolio, ADMS is engineered with adaptive algorithms and predictive analytics to help utilities operate the grid more efficiently and enable automation. The system will be able to predict issues, identify the faults on the grid and propose a restoration plan.

"The Distribution Management System (ADMS) will help optimize energy distribution, reduce electricity losses and minimize shortages," said the National Coordinator for MCA-Benin II. "This project is aligned with the government's ambition to efficiently manage the generation from power plants, microgrids and other grid infrastructure to improve the quality, efficiency and availability of power to our customers. "This system will also help manage the security and maintain control of the grid."

Cote d'Ivoire
Under this contract, GE will rehabilitate and expand three 225kV substations in Ferke, Man and Taabo. This project will help improve the electricity supply in the northern, western and central part of Côte d'Ivoire.

"With about 90% of the country's population having access to electricity and the growing demand for energy, limited distribution systems cause a total energy loss of approximately 20% annually. There is a need to rehabilitate and strengthen the country's grid infrastructure," said Bile Gerard TANOE – Secretary General of CI-ENERGIES. "This project will improve the power capacities of Ferke, Man and Taabo substations to help mitigate total energy losses and provide the reliability needed to limit the total unavailability of these critical substations," he added.

"Energy is a key component for on-going development in Sub-Saharan Africa. With only 45 percent of electrification rates in many countries in the region, it is critical to develop an end-to-end solution to increase energy access and foster economic development," said Lazarus Angbazo, President & CEO of GE Renewable Energy's Grid Solutions business in Sub-Saharan Africa. "These projects reinforce GE's involvement in implementing key infrastructure for energy transmission and interconnection development in Africa through smart solutions and turnkey project expertise."

GE's Grid Solutions business provides complete, engineered solutions for high voltage (HV) substations to power generation companies, utilities, and industries, bringing together the right mix of high-voltage products through expert engineering and full project management. Grid Solutions has designed and implemented over 1,700 substation projects globally in the last 10 years.

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