Article Search
  Proudly searching ONLY South Africa
Search South African websites

 Ethiopia hopes to power neighbours with dams

    April 18 2006 at 05:00PM

By Tsegaye Tadesse

Addis Ababa - Ethiopia is building three hydropower dams at a cost of $1,4-billion (about R14-billion) and hopes to generate millions of dollars in foreign currency by exporting excess electricity to three neighbouring countries, officials said.

The dams - harnessing power from rivers cascading from Ethiopia's rugged, towering mountains - are expected to produce a total of 1 155 Megawatts, the official said on Tuesday.

"By 2010, the construction of the Tekeze hydro power dam with a capacity of 300 MW, Geligele Gibe II with a capacity of 420 MW and Belesse hydro power dam with a capacity of 435 MW will be completed," said Sendeku Araya, head of public relations at the state-owned Ethiopian Electric Power Corporation (EEPCO).

"Ethiopia aims to export its excess electric power to neighbouring Sudan, Djibouti and Kenya and earn millions of dollars," Sendeku told Reuters in an interview.

He said the cost of building the dams was being covered by the Ethiopian government as well as loans from the Italian government and the European Investment Bank.

Tesfaye Batu, project manager for the construction of a $68-million power line linking Shehedi in Ethiopia to Gedaref in Sudan 194 kms away, said work was progressing well.

"When the project is completed Ethiopia would earn $30-million annually for the export of 200 MW low-cost hydropower, to neighboring Sudan which is intended to replace the costly thermal generation which it is currently using," Tesfaye said.

The project is expected to be completed by 2010, he added.

Bogale Feyissa, project manager for a powerline linking Ethiopia to Djibouti, said the construction of the 283 km line supplying 40 MW to the Red Sea state is expected to cost $62-million, which the African Development Bank has agreed to fund.

Sendeku said plans to supply hydropower to Kenya was still under discussion.

Ethiopia currently generates 800 MW from four hydropower plants for domestic consumption.

Email StoryPrint Story

     Online Services

         FREE Newsletter
Now you can get all your news - from politics in South Africa, the quirkiest stories in Step Beyond, the latest from the worlds of Motoring, Entertainment and Business - in one place.
Sign up and you'll have all the latest news at your fingertips.

     More East Africa Stories

     Breaking News      Most Read Stories
      Top 5 News Stories
      Top 5 Africa Stories
      Top 5 Reads - Yesterday
Spice up your phone with less effort!
Visit to download the latest ringtones, logos, wallpapers or click here to browse our range of mobile games.

     Entertainment      Motoring
Jackson not the real father?
Kate Moss's car raided by gang
Robbie Williams wants to settle down

Analysts reject inflation forecasts
Eurocape inks deal for Taj Hotel in the Cape
State must pay for services - like everyone else
Century of Grands Prix: Aged racers drive down Memory Lane
Coming Avensis v. Corona - how things have changed!
Alonso again after Brit Button burns out
First ride: Kawasaki's awesome ZX-14
New clothes and gearbox for Yamaha's express tourer

Airport upgrade in pipeline for Plett
Break through to other side with les fameuse
Unearthing Lake District's 'unique splendour'
Speed not king for all US roller coaster fans
Mexicans gear up for cultural mission
Teaching firms plan for long-term challenges
Clients are the apple of his eye
Loyalty contracts need to step aside
Embrace education laws, schools urged
Staffing service focuses on excellence