Saudi private energy developer Acwa Power announced 23 December that it has signed a power purchase agreement with Ethiopia’s state generator Ethiopian Electric Power (EEP) for two 125MW solar PV projects, one to be built at Dicheto in the northeastern Afar region and one at Gad in the southeastern Somali region. Acwa says it will supply EEP with electricity at a rate of US¢2.526/kWh over 20 years – a figure only a little higher than recent electricity pricing bids for the more developed electricity sectors in Egypt, where Acwa was the winning bidder, and Tunisia (MEES, 22 November 2019).

This is Acwa’s first venture in Ethiopia, although it is already involved in solar and wind projects in Morocco, South Africa and Egypt. The company has built a large portfolio of generating assets, mainly within Saudi Arabia, through a competitive bidding strategy. Acwa’s biggest asset is an $8bn joint venture agreement with US firm Air Products and Saudi Aramco to operate the latter’s 4GW Jazan integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) power plant and air separation unit over 25 years (see p11 and MEES, 11 January 2019). (CONTINUED - 182 WORDS)