Egyptian transmission grid operator EETC has secured a €182.9mn ($201.4mn) loan from London-based European Bank for Reconstruction & Development (EBRD) to expand the country’s transmission network. EBRD announced on 26 November that the loan will fund EETC’s integration of 1.3GW of renewables projects to the grid through new or refurbished high voltage substations. The loan will also help fund reduction in transmission line losses. Among recent renewables project awards are a 200MW solar PV project at Kom Ombo in southern Egypt to Saudi private energy developer Acwa Power (MEES, 8 November) and the 250MW West Bakr wind farm 30km northwest of Ras Gharib on the Gulf of Suez to Netherlands-based Lekela Power (MEES, 18 October).

Egypt has recently completed the 1.48GW Benban solar park, which is linked to the grid to the west of Kom Ombo on the other side of the Nile (MEES, 1 November). EBRD was the lead investor at Benban, after Cairo’s Ministry of Energy relaxed previously prohibitive solar development terms (MEES, 3 November 2017). (CONTINUED - 164 WORDS)