The Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa (Sefa) has granted US$842 000 to smart solutions firm dVentus Technologies, to develop a smart meter manufacturing facility in Ethiopia to service the domestic market, the African Development Bank (AfDB) announced on their website.

The Sefa fund is hosted by the AfDB and will drive the adoption of energy efficiency technologies in the energy sector.

‘The grant will finance a market and bankability study as well as product validation and certification with the aim of mitigating part of the technical development risks and catalysing the financing required for the transition and expansion plan’, the AfDB said.

According to the AfDB, the project will highlight local expertise and capabilities in developing energy efficient technology which can be distributed throughout the continent’s green energy sectors.

The AfDB added that the project aims to encourage private investors ‘in an industry of key importance for enabling investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency. ‘The facility will provide products that will lead to an improvement in power distribution and generation and help address Ethiopia’s current and projected energy shortfall.

Smart electric meters will have a direct impact in efficient billing, load management, tariff management, and theft control resulting in smaller power losses, fewer power outages and better customer service. It is estimated that savings up to $66 million per year and a 50% reduction in distribution losses could be achieved if the two million connected clients in Ethiopia were to use this technology’, the AfDB said.