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  • Juwi bags EPC deals for 250 MW of S African solar projects
  • Namibia completes installation of its largest PV-plus-storage system
  • InfraCo Africa inks 60-MW solar PPA in Chad
  • Construction of Phase I of regional power pool project set for completion
  • US $6.56m hybrid solar systems to be constructed in Eritrea
  • Lekela Power completes financial close for West Africa’s largest wind farm (158MW)
  • How Solar Energy Is Powering Off-Grid Areas in East Africa and Lighting Up Lives
  • EPC contracted for Kenya’s second largest wind farm
  • IFC partners with Moroccan company to develop clean power projects
  • Enel Green Power reaches financial close for five wind projects
  • Uganda to receive US $141 m to boost its energy sector
  • Kenya: Geothermal Development Company to commence drilling wells
  • Financial close for Senegal’s first utility-scale wind farm announced
  • BioTherm reaches US $500m financial close for 284MW wind, solar portfolio
  • Egypt’s Megaproject commences operations
  • India offers Uganda $205 mn credit to boost energy, agriculture sectors
  • Nigeria to generate 14MW electricity from Cross River bio-diesel project
  • Morocco to inaugurate US $170m Khalladi windfarm project
  • GE completes $40-million power transmission project in Ethiopia
  • Tanzania to provide electrification of all islands through renewable energy
  • Zambia, Zimbabwe signs US $5bn deal for Batoka Gorge hydro electricity project
  • S.Africa: Central Energy Fund signs 100MW CSP deal
  • Kenya to receive US $66m to develop a 52MWp solar PV plant
  • AfDB to pilot Sh394 million clean stove project in Kenya

  • Juwi bags EPC deals for 250 MW of S African solar projects

    Juwi Renewable Energies, part of renewables developer Juwi Group, has sealed ZAR 3 billion (USD 206m/EUR 181m) worth of contracts to build, operate and maintain 250 MW of solar parks in South Africa. The three engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) deals with private equity fund manager African Infrastructure Investment Managers (AIIM) cover three separate photovoltaic (PV) projects. Those are the 86-MW Waterloo and the 78-MW Bokamoso solar plants, both to be located in North West Province, as well as the 86-MW Droogfontein 2 PV farm in the Northern Cape. Juwi expects to start building the Droogfontein 2 park in the third quarter, while construction at the Bokamoso and Waterloo sites is slated to begin in the last quarter of 2018 and first quarter of 2019, respectively. Following completion, the German firm will deliver operation and maintenance (O&M) services for the facilities for an initial five-year term.

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    Namibia completes installation of its largest PV-plus-storage system

    Namibia has announced it has finished installation of its largest PV-plus-storage system. This is according German EPC company Cronimet who financed, engineered and installed the system with partner OLC Solar Energy. The EPC Company said the solar array will have a system capacity of 150 kW and will power Chobe Water Villas, a lodge complex which also has a 332 kWh battery storage system provided by Qinous to help reduce electricity consumption. Despite favorable solar irradiation, the Namibian solar market is yet to take off. For smaller distributed generation projects, Namibia has a net-metering scheme by which state-owned utility NamPower buys energy at rates pre-negotiated and approved with Namibia’s energy regulator, the Electricity Control Board. In 2016, 68% of Namibia’s electricity supply was imported, primarily from neighboring South Africa. The PV-storage system will be owned and operated by Cronimet as an independent power producer. OLC Energy Services, Cronimet’s joint venture with OLC Solar Energy, will provide operations and maintenance.

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    InfraCo Africa inks 60-MW solar PPA in Chad

    InfraCo Africa has entered into a power purchase agreement (PPA) with the government of Chad for the output of a 60-MWp solar power plant. InfraCo Africa, a company that mobilises private sector participation and investment, said in a statement last week that it has signed the deal with Chad’s energy ministry and national utility La Societe Nationale d’Electricite (SNE). The contract concerns the Djermaya Solar project, which will be realised in two stages -one of 32 MWp and one of 28 MWp. It is being developed by Aldwych Africa Development Limited (AADL) on behalf of InfraCo Africa, and Smart Energies. InfraCo Africa will contribute USD 3 million (EUR 2.6m) to the development of the scheme, while sister company, the Technical Assistance Facility (TAF), will add USD 0.8 million in grants. The EU-Africa Infrastructure Trust Fund (EU-AITF) has allocated EUR 6.35 million for the construction of a transmission line and substation to connect the plant to the grid. The African Development Bank has been confirmed as mandated lead arranger for the solar project.

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    Construction of Phase I of regional power pool project set for completion

    The construction of the Kenya and Ethiopia electricity transmission interconnector is expected to be completed next year, concluding the first phase of the region’s power pool project. According to Kenya’s Energy Principal Secretary Joseph Njoroge, the 1,045 km line is three-quarters complete on the Kenyan side and 90% complete on the Ethiopian side. “We estimate that the entire project will be complete mid next year and will help improve the electricity trade in the East African region,” said Mr Njoroge. The 500kv Ethiopia-Kenya interconnector, funded by the African Development Bank is a high voltage direct current line, with more than 600 km of it being on the Kenyan side and 430 km on the Ethiopian side. “We expected that the line will be able to evacuate 400 MW of power from Ethiopia to Kenya but we have reopened negotiations on the capacity in line with the increasing electricity demand in Kenya,” said Mr Njoroge.

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    US $6.56m hybrid solar systems to be constructed in Eritrea

    Eritrea is set to construct two solar hybrid systems that will provide grid quality electricity to 40,000 people and businesses in the towns of Areza and Maidma where there is no grid power at all at a cost of US $6.56m. Eritrean Ministry of Energy and Mines confirmed the statement saying the project aims to improve the livelihoods of people living in rural towns and villages. It is hoped the project will be replicated in order to mitigate the adverse effects of climate change in Eritrea and provide access to reliable power 24/7. The two agricultural towns in the Debub Southern region depend on small diesel generators which are environmentally damaging and provide limited and intermittent power supply. To save the environment and the standard of living of the people, the European Union, the United Nations Development Programme and the Government of Eritrea launched the project last year which will be completed in 2018 by the UK’s largest solar company, Solarcentury.

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    Lekela Power completes financial close for West Africa’s largest wind farm (158MW)

    Mainstream Renewable Power, the global renewable energy developer congratulates Lekela Power, the Pan-African renewable energy generation platform on the successful completion of financial close for the utility scale wind project, Taiba N’Diaye in Senegal. The 158MW wind project located 70km north of Dakar has a 20 year PPA with Senelec pegged to the Euro and supported by a Government guarantee. Taiba N’Diaye will transition into construction shortly with Vestas, the world’s largest wind turbine manufacturer supplying 46 of its 3.45MW turbines, and contracted for the EPC works. Vestas has also signed a 20 year service and availability Agreement for the turbine maintenance. Lekela has a project portfolio in excess of 1.3GW and is majority-owned by shareholders, 60% by Actis, the leading growth markets energy investor, and 40% by a consortium led by Mainstream Renewable Power which includes investors such as the IFC and the Rockefeller Brothers Fund.

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    How Solar Energy Is Powering Off-Grid Areas in East Africa and Lighting Up Lives

    Kenyans can expect to pay less for electricity upon the inauguration of the region's largest solar plant next month, in the northeastern part of the country. The 55MW Garissa plant comes as East Africa is increasingly feeding solar into the national grid, and two years after the launch of Uganda's 20MW Soroti power plant. A new report on renewable power from the International Energy Agency (IEA) shows that solar is providing new opportunities for households and businesses. IEA predicts that Africa's off-grid solar capacity will triple in the next five years to more than 3,000MW. The Garissa solar plant which was to be completed in December, is opening ahead of schedule. It is expected to bring down the cost of electricity to $0.05/kWh, and reduce carbon emissions into the atmosphere by about 43,000 tonnes. "We are happy that the project will be on the grid by the end of next month. This project is a break from over-reliance on hydroelectric and geothermal power. Our focus now is on green energy. We hope with this injection the cost of power will come down to $0.054 per unit," Energy Cabinet Secretary Charles Keter said.

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    EPC contracted for Kenya’s second largest wind farm

    Kenya’s second largest wind farm, the Kipeto Wind Power Project, has secured a 22-month EPC contract. The project will contribute an additional 100MW of clean power once completed. Located in the south west of Nairobi, the Kipeto project will include the construction of 60 GE wind turbines, and produce an additional 100MW of renewable energy onto the Kenyan national grid. The project is the second largest in the country after the Lake Turkana Wind Power Project, which WorleyParsons provided the overall project management, engineering review and construction management services for. Read more: KPLC enters into 20 year PPA with Kipeto Energy “Our successful execution of the Lake Turkana Wind Power Project and the experience gained played a key role in WorleyParsons winning the Kipeto project,” said project director Tim Gaskell. According to the EPC firm, an estimated 1,000 local jobs will be created; where continued employment will also be afforded to local contractors and some of the local personnel who were part of the Lake Turkana Wind Power Project team.

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    IFC partners with Moroccan company to develop clean power projects

    The International Finance Corporation (IFC) has forged a new partnership with Gaia Energy to create a joint platform for the development of wind power and other renewable energy projects in Africa. The new joint platform will start with a pipeline of 22 projects in nine countries in North, West and East Africa, representing a pipeline under development of more than 3GW. Originally developed by the Moroccan renewable energy developer, Gaia Energy, this pipeline will be progressively enlarged to new countries across the continent. Read more: World Bank exceeds climate finance target with record year “IFC’s expertise in financial structuring and mobilisation, as well as its environmental and social safeguards, ideally complements Gaia’s tailor-made approach to develop projects in new markets,” said Moundir Zniber, founder and President of the company. Zniber added: “Our partnership is a key step in expanding our business in the countries where we are present, and hopefully beyond. IFC and Gaia share the same values and vision regarding sustainability and the importance of South/South Cooperation to build tomorrow’s Africa.

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    Enel Green Power reaches financial close for five wind projects

    Enel Green Power RSA has signed project financing agreements of up to €950 million ($1 billion), with senior lenders Ned bank and Absa for the development of wind projects in South Africa. The facility is inclusive of up to 80% of the overall investment of around €1.2 billion ($1.3 billion) on a portfolio of five new wind projects, totaling roughly 700MW of capacity. The five projects, namely Nxuba, Oyster Bay, Garob, Karusa and Soetwater, have a capacity of around 140MW each. Antonio Cammisecra, head of Enel’s Global Renewable Energies Division Enel Green Power, commented: “We have reached an important milestone in South Africa by achieving financial close on five major wind projects, which confirm our continuing commitment to the country’s renewable sector, within a context of sustainable development. “Enel Green Power will be supporting these processes by generating its emission-free energy in partnership with local shareholders and in cooperation with the local communities, according to our long-term vision of shared value creation.”.

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    Uganda to receive US $141 m to boost its energy sector

    The Government of Uganda is set to receive a boost to its energy sector after India has offered a loan of US $141m to help the East African country expand its electricity distribution infrastructure. According to Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni, the loan would be extended to Kampala to build electricity transmission lines and substations. The sector’s financing gap is currently estimated at more than US $500 m, reflected in worn-out sections of the country’s power supply network and a low electricity penetration rate of less than 20 % of the population. “Any investment in the power sector is welcome. We still need funds for the repair of old supply infrastructure in some areas and construction of new distribution lines in areas that are not connected to the national electricity grid. So far, the Europeans have dominated investments in the mini hydro generation sub sector while China has dominated the large hydro generation segment through financing and construction of the Karuma and Isimba power dams. The Indian firms, in comparison, have been very active in construction of many electricity sub-stations commissioned by Umeme Ltd in various parts of Uganda,” said Julius Wandera, Uganda’s spokesperson of the Electricity Regulatory Authority.

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    Kenya: Geothermal Development Company to commence drilling wells

    The company’s general manager in-charge of drilling and infrastructure, George Kinyanjui, said the first phase of the project at Baringo-Silali Block will be seeking to produce steam that can generate 300MW of electricity to be injected into the national grid. According to the Daily Nations, Kinyanjui said they have identified Paka, Silale and Korossi as prospect areas with each expected to generate more than 100MW. "GDC is currently developing water systems in the project area with more than 20 wells already drilled in Korosi, Paka and Silale. We have also managed to open the road network to the project area with more than 120 kilometres completed," said Kinyanjui. He said the power company is planning to pump water from Lake Baringo to Paka, which will open the door for drilling to commence in August. "We've already put in place drilling wells, three in each of the prospect areas. Drilling works will commence soon once the water system is complete," he stated. The company has already installed community distribution systems and nine storage tanks, each with a capacity of 4.5 million litres.

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    Financial close for Senegal’s first utility-scale wind farm announced

    Construction will begin shortly on the west African country’s first utility-scale wind farm – delivering up to 158.7MW of clean, reliable, and competitively-priced energy to the rapidly expanding local grid. Once the project is fully operational, in less than two years’ time, it will provide over 450,000MWh of energy per year for over two million people, said a company statement. Situated 70km north of Dakar, the project, which will operate under the name Parc Eolien Taiba N’Diaye, will consist of 46 Vestas wind turbines, each able to produce 3.45MW. It forms a critical component of the Government of Senegal’s strategy to increase clean electricity production, diversify the country’s energy mix, and ensure affordability. The project is anticipated to save over 300,000 tonnes of CO2 emission into the atmosphere per year. Financing has been provided by OPIC, the US government’s development finance institution and EKF, Denmark’s Export Credit Agency. MIGA, the international financial institution provided political risk insurance, and Power Africa also supported the project’s development.

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    BioTherm reaches US $500m financial close for 284MW wind, solar portfolio

    BioTherm, Independent power producer (IPP) has announced to have reached a financial close of US $500m for 284-MW wind, solar portfolio in South Africa. The funds will support the construction of 120MW Golden Valley, the 32 MW Excelsior wind parks as well as the 86 MW Konkoonsies II and 45-MW Aggeneys solar plants which are expected to become fully operational by the end of 2020. China’s Xinjiang Goldwind Science & Tech Co Ltd (HKG:2208), the contractors awarded the wind firm projects will be responsible for engineering, procurement and construction,(EPC) services while ET solutions AG will be responsible for building the photovoltaic (PV) farms. The four projects which were awarded under the Round IV of South Africa’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP) will have a 20-year inflation linked power in the closing quarter of 2020. BioTherm Energy stated that it has more than 2 GW of wind and solar projects in its pipeline and is nearing construction on over 440 MW of them in other countries like South Africa, Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire and Burkina Faso.

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    Egypt’s Megaproject commences operations

    The stations will add a total of 14.4GW of power generation capacity to the country's national grid, enough power to supply up to 40 million people. Commenting on this milestone, H.E. Dr. Mohamed Shaker, the Egyptian Minister of Electricity and Renewable Energy, said: "The completion of the power plants is a significant milestone in the government's strategy to modernise energy infrastructure in Egypt to drive industrial growth and economic progress." This is also why the plants were built in select locations across the country to serve the growing demand for electricity among households, businesses and industries. This new power infrastructure will serve as the backbone for economic prosperity in Egypt for years to come." Siemens underlined that together with Egypt they have set a new world record for execution of modern, fast-track power projects, delivering 14.4 GW of power in only 27.5 months. "The record-breaking completion of our Megaproject in Egypt will not only transform the power landscape in Egypt, but will also serve as a blueprint for building up power infrastructure in the Middle East and all over the world," said Joe Kaeser, President and CEO of Siemens AG.

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    India offers Uganda $205 mn credit to Boost Energy, Agriculture Sectors

    KAMPALA: India has offered Uganda a total $205 million worth of credit to help the East African country expand its electricity distribution infrastructure and invest in its agriculture sector, which employs majority of its workforce. A statement issued in Kampala where India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi started a two-day visit on Tuesday, said Modi and his host President Yoweri Museveni also discussed reform of the U.N. security council. A loan of $141 million would be extended to Kampala to build electricity transmission lines and substations while another $64 million would spent on boosting agriculture and diary production, the statement said. Uganda and India's relations date back to the 19th Century when Britain shipped a large number of Indians into East Africa to build a railway from the Indian Ocean coast into the hinterland and terminating in Uganda's west. The Indian labourers remained after constructing the railway, growing into a large and economically successful community in the intervening decades of colonialism. When dictator Idi Amin took power in Uganda in 1971, he accused them of exploiting the country and subsequently expelled them from Uganda, giving their businesses to locals.

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    Nigeria to generate 14MW electricity from Cross River bio-diesel project

    The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, has set the 26,000 hectares Cross River State oil palm-based bio-diesel project to generate 14 MW of electricity. According to the NNPC, Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Mr. Ndu Ughamadu, the electricity will be from empty fruit bunches and the residue from oil palms. The 26, 000 hectares facility’s design is to accommodate an oil palm plantation co-located with bio-diesel, crude palm oil co-generation plants and other facilities. Under the arrangement, Ughamadu said the oil palm would be processed into fuel grade Bio diesel and industrial crude palm oil as by-products. Mr. Ughamadu said, the Bio diesel would be blended with diesel in a mix of 20 per cent bio diesel and 80 per cent diesel and sold as B20 in the domestic market, while any utilized bio diesel quantity would be exported to the international market.

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    Morocco to inaugurate US $120m Khalladi windfarm project

    ACWA Power has inaugurated its 120 MW Khalladi wind farm in Melloussa, Tangier, and is set to supply clean power to a number of large industrial companies. This entirely privately funded investment was financed with equity from ACWA Power and ARIF and long tenor debt, from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) in collaboration with the Clean Technology Fund (CTF), and the Moroccan BMCE Bank of Africa (BMCE). The energy plant is set to produce and supply 370GWh of energy to industrial companies which is equivalent to a yearly average consumption of a city of 400,000 people and will contribute to the reduction of more than 144,000 tons of CO2 emissions per year. The Khalladi project will contribute to Morocco achieving its 2020 target of increasing the renewable energy component of the energy mix to 42%, and part of the ambition to develop 2,000 MW of wind capacity all by 2020.

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    GE completes $40-million power transmission project in Ethiopia

    General Electric has completed its Electricity Transmission Improvement Turnkey Project for southern and south-western Ethiopia, worth a reported $40 million. The project, completed in partnership with the state-owned Ethiopian Electric Power, will improve electricity access through new substations and bulk transfer of power. In a statement released last week, the company said that the substations would increase economic activity in southern part of Ethiopia and raise access to reliable supply of electricity in several towns. Although the power grid covers 60 percent of towns in Ethiopia, 30 percent of Ethiopians still do not have access to electricity. In the statement Lazarus Angbazo, Regional Leader for General Electric’s Grid Solutions Business in Sub-Saharan Africa, said: “There is an urgent need for household electrification. This project will significantly reduce high transmission losses while improving system efficiency, stability and reliability”.

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    Tanzania to provide electrification of all islands through renewable energy

    The government of Tanzania, through the ministry of energy has come up with a strategy that will enable electrification of all islands in the country through renewable energy. This was revealed by the deputy minister, Ms Subira Mgalu, at the weekend during her tour of Mafia where she inspected implementation of some power projects. Speaking with Mafia residents at different areas, the minister assured them that the government was committed to providing them with sustainable energy, especially solar power, in an effort to boost industrial activities in all islands. According to Ms Subira, the project is expected to begin in September by providing solar panels to all public institutions on the islands in order to for them to improve their services. For his part, the representative of the director general of Rural Energy Agency (Rea), Mr Hussein Shamdas, said the study for the provision of the panels has already been finalized and that the project will kick off in September without delay.

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    Zambia, Zimbabwe signs US $5bn deal for Batoka Gorge hydro electricity project

    Zimbabwe and Zambia have agreed on principles for the US $5bn Batoka Gorge Hydro Electricity project secured by Harare, paving way for a technical meeting this week between experts from two the countries. Zimbabwe recently received an expression of interest from General Electric Africa to undertake the 1 600MW power project along the Zambezi River, co-owned with Zambia. The project will ease power shortages in Zimbabwe and Zambia, with a huge potential to supply other regional countries. Zimbabwe’s President Mnangagwa said that three companies have already applied to do the project and they are assessing their capability. The project is going to create 6 000 jobs. The development comes as Zimbabwe has set in motion a number of electricity generation projects. These will see the country produce surplus power in the next five years. President Mnangagwa recently launched the US $1.5 bn Hwange Power Station Unit 7 and 8 construction project which will add 600MW to the national grid.

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    S.Africa: Central Energy Fund signs 100MW CSP deal

    The Central Energy Fund of South Africa and ACWA Power have entered into a cooperation agreement to co-invest in renewable energy projects the first of which will be the 100MW Redstone concentrated solar thermal power (CSP) plant in the country’s Northern Cape Province. The agreement was signed on the occasion of South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa, recent state visit to Saudi Arabia. The CSP plant will go into construction later this year and feature solar energy storage technology that will allow solar energy to be utilised to generate electricity not only when the sun is shining but also through the night cumulatively dispatching 480,000MWh per year. The plant will use a central salt receiver technology with 12 hours of thermal storage allowing the plant to generate during the evening peak demand periods. In addition, while photovoltaics (PV) or wind cannot serve the evening peak unless then linked with utility-scale batteries which are extremely expensive, the CSP Central Tower solution will in comparison generate cost competitively more than double the MWh output of electrical energy per the rated MW capacity.

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    Kenya to receive US $66m to develop a 52MWp solar PV plant

    A UK government development finance institution CDC, alongside its partner, Globeleq is set to invest a US $66m in Malindi Solar Group to build a 52MWp solar photovoltaic power plant in South-East Kenya. The 16-year financing will provide much needed power in the Malindi area, which currently struggles with regular power shortages and relies largely on expensive thermal plants. Globeleq, CDC’s majority-owned independent power producer solely focused on building power generation in Africa, is working with its partners Africa Energy Development Corporation (AEDC) and IDEA Power to commence construction in the coming months. The project is set to bring clean power and employment to the Malindi region, where the project is on track to be the first of four utility-scale solar power plants in Kenya to begin construction. Globeleq will be the 90% shareholder of the Malindi project, with its partner AEDC, the originator of the project, holding the remaining 10%.

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    AfDB to pilot Sh394 million clean stove project in Kenya

    An affiliate of the African Development Bank (AfDB) is set to pilot a clean cooking industry technical assistance project in Kenya, Ghana and Cameroon. The Fund for African Private Sector Assistance (Fapa) will carry out the project, together with three others, at a cost of about Sh393.4 million ($3.9 million) aiming to create jobs for the youth through the development of small and medium enterprises (SMEs). The clean cooking project alone will receive technical assistance — which comes as part of the actual implementation of the project on the ground – to the tune of Sh100.4 million. “Prioritised under the New Deal on Energy for Africa, the Clean Cooking Industry technical assistance project of $995,360 (Sh100.4 million) will be implemented in the following pilot countries: Cameroon, Ghana, and Kenya. The project aims to promote the growth of clean cooking solutions industry across its value chain,” said AfDB in a statement. Since the beginning of the year, the Fapa has approved seven SME projects for funding to the tune of Sh645.6 million, with the latest three receiving part of this financing.

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    GE commissions hybrid power unit for Oromia, Ethiopia

    Global power solutions firm, General Electric (GE), in collaboration with a local entity, Solar Tech, have commissioned a scalable microgrid system powered by a hybrid distributed power unit for Digo Village, in the Oromia region. The commissioning is consistent with Ethiopia’s National Electrification Programme – Implementation Road Map (NEP-IRM), which seeks for a coordinated off-grid implementation programme plan, designed for accelerated scale-up of mini grid solutions in rural and deep rural areas. The system, which was implemented in partnership with Ethiopia’s Ministry of Water, Irrigation and Electricity, the Oromia Region Energy bureau as well as Ethiopian Electric Utility (EEU) will provide power to 1,500 inhabitants of the village.

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