Enel wins Ethiopia’s 100 MW solar tender

Italian energy company Enel has announced that its renewable energy subsidiary Enel Green Power (EGP) was selected as the preferred bidder in the tender for the construction of a 100 MW solar power plant in Metehara, Oromia, central Ethiopia.

The $120 million project is scheduled to come online in 2019 and to sell power to the Ethiopian power utility Ethiopian Electric Power (EPP) under a 20-year PPA.

The process tender was launched in May 2016 in the frame of the country’s renewable energy program GTP 2. The tender initially attracted more than 60 bids, but in early September five consortia were shortlisted: the Enel-led consortium, which also includes Ethiopian infrastructure company Orchid Business Group, a consortium led by Spanish developer Fotowatio, a French consortium formed by Solairedirect and Meridiam, another Italian consortium led by The Building Energy Spa, and a group of companies led by CCE Oasis Technology Corporation.

The Ethiopian government announced in June a five-year energy plan seeking to diversify its energy mix and increase the country’s electrification rate.

Based on the government’s energy plan for the years up to 2020, Ethiopia has prioritized 300 MW of solar PV projects dispersed across three sites; 820 MW of wind power to be located in four sites; 570 MW of geothermal power to be developed in four sites; and an extra 3879 MW of new hydro plants in eight different sites.

In early October, the government launched a Request for Pre-Qualification for the deployment of another 250 MW of PV capacity.

Ethiopia has currently around 4.3 GW of installed power generation capacity. Of this, 3,810 MW come from hydro installations, 324 MW from wind, 7 MW is geothermal energy and there is also 143 MW of diesel power generation.