Last week, the Italian construction company, Salini Impregilo, announced that it signed a contract agreement with EEP to build the Koysha hydroelectric power plant estimated at €2.5 billion ($27 million) to be located on the lower bank of Gibe River.
Meanwhile, local media reported that Salini Impregilo’s announcement follows after government had declared, a few months ago, that it secured a grant from an Italian credit firm to fund the project.
Sources only known to Sudan Tribune revealed that the funds were actually obtained from an Italian financial firm, Servizi Assicuative del Commerce Estero, which according to the media an Ethiopian delegation had to travel to Italy to seal the finance deal with the financier.
Koysha hydropower capacity
According to a company statement, the project includes a 170 metre high rolled compacted concrete (RCC) dam; the reservoir volume is 6,000 million cubic metres, which will have an annual power generation capacity of 6,460GWh.
This new project together with Gibe III, which went into operation in September 2015 and the Grand Renaissance Dam on the Blue Nile will enable Ethiopia to become Africa’s leader in terms of energy production, the company statement predicted.
Ethiopia – an energy exporter
Ethiopia, currently exporting energy to neighbouring countries including Kenya, Sudan and Djibouti, hopes to become a middle income nation by 2025, and intends to become a leading power exporter in the east African region and beyond.
Addressing parliamentary members in a recent parliament session, Ethiopian Prime Minister, Hailemariam Desalegn, is reported to have said the country’s desire is to tap several rivers for power generation in efforts to boost manufacturing and industrialisation as well as transform Ethiopia’s agricultural economy.