ENEL steps into Ethiopian Market with Solar Tender
Enel, acting through a consortium led by its renewables arm Enel Green Power and including leading Ethiopian infrastructure company Orchid Business Group, has been selected as the preferred bidder for a 100 MW PV project following a solar tender launched by local utility Ethiopian Electric Power within the framework of the country’s Growth and Transformation Plan. The consortium has the right to develop, build and operate the 100 MW of PV capacity in Metehara. The Ethiopian Government’s GTP 2 is expected to collect nearly 12,000 MW of new hydro, wind, geothermal and solar capacity in partnership with the private sector, with the aim of meeting the country’s electrification needs while diversifying its generation mix in line with the government’s energy plan for the years up to 2020.
“Ethiopia has all the potential to become a key market for Enel’s strategy in Africa,” said Antonio Cammisecra, Head of Enel Green Power. “The country has plenty of renewable sources that can generate energy at affordable rates thanks to modern green technologies. Additionally, Ethiopia boasts a stable regulatory framework, based on tenders and PPAs, and steady energy demand growth, which is also sustained by a long-term electrification plan. We are more than happy to invest in this country, with the aim of meeting its energy demand through our renewable energy expertise, helping to boost Ethiopia’s overall development while supporting local communities with our sustainability initiatives.”
The EGP-led consortium will be investing approximately 120 million US dollars in the construction of the solar PV plant. The facility will be located in Metehara, in the Oromia region, almost 200 km east of Addis Ababa, an area that enjoys high levels of solar radiation. The Metehara plant is expected to enter into operation in 2019. Once up and running, the facility will be able to generate approximately 280 GWh per year, while avoiding the emission of around 296,000 tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere. The solar park will be supported by a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with EEP for all of the energy generated by the plant.
Ethiopia has an installed generation capacity of around 4.3 GW, 90% coming from hydropower, 8% from wind and 1% from thermal sources, and a major solar, wind and geothermal as well as hydro potential. Approximately 27.2% of Ethiopia’s population of 102 million have access to electricity.
Enel is the largest private energy player in Africa’s renewable sector in terms of installed capacity. In South Africa, Enel operates in the renewable sector through its subsidiary Enel Green Power RSA, which owns and operates five PV plants, namely Paleisheuwel (82.5 MW), Adams (82.5 MW), Pulida (82.5 MW), Tom Burke (66 MW), and Upington (10 MW). In addition, the company also operates two wind farms: the 88 MW Nojoli farm and the 111 MW Gibson Bay farm both located in the Eastern Cape Province. Enel is also present in Zambia, where it has been awarded a 34 MW solar project.
Enel is a multinational power company and a leading integrated player in the global, power, gas and renewables markets. It is Europe’s largest utility in terms of market capitalisation and figures among Europe’s leading power companies in terms of installed capacity and reported EBITDA. The Group is present in over 30 countries worldwide, producing energy with more than 85 GW of managed capacity. Enel distributes electricity and gas through a network of over 2 million kilometres, and with over 65 million business and household customers globally, the Group has the largest customer base among European competitors. Enel’s renewables arm Enel Green Power already manages around 39 GW of wind, solar, geothermal, biomass and hydropower plants in Europe, the Americas, Africa, Asia and has recently arrived in Australia.