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Ethiopia and Kenya setting up powerful power transmission connection

Transmission line tower (source: flickr/ Ian Muttoo, creative commons)
Alexander Richter 2 Nov 2018

A new powerful electricity transmission inter-connector between Ethiopia and Kenya will provide a great economic development incentive for the region as part of a larger Eastern Power Integration Program, supported by the African Development Bank, French Development Agency (AFD) and the World Bank.

In interesting news today it is reported that a new high voltage direct current (HVDC) power line inter-connector between Ethiopia and Kenya is set to be completed by July 2019.

With an MOU signed between the countries in 2006, the project has been developed by a consortium of contractors made up of Germany’s Siemens for the converter station, KEC International of India, Larsen and Toubro of India and Kalpataru Power Transmission of India. China Electric Power Equipment and Technology Company Limited is overseeing the construction of the 500Kv HVDC transmission line.

The project has been funded by the African Development Bank (AfDB) jointly with the French Development Agency (AFD), the World Bank and the Government of Kenya.

The electricity infrastructure is believed to support investments and industrial and economic development along the transmission line.  With the big hydro-power development in Ethiopia this provides a certain electricity market stability and supply. At the same time it creates a certain competitive element in the development of national power projects. The main direction of electricity is expected to be from Ethiopia to Kenya.

The transmission line will cross from Ethiopia into Kenya approximately 90 km West of Moyale town and traverses Marsabit, Samburu, Isiolo, Laikipia, Nyandarua and Nakuru.

The so called Eastern Electricity Highway Project is developed under the First Phase of the Eastern Africa Power Integration Program.

Of the 1,044 kilometres interconnector, 433 km will be in Ethiopia and the rest in Kenyan territory.

With geothermal development in Ethiopia and in Nakuru, Kenya the question is how it will impact geothermal power generation and possible cross-border sales.

Source: HornDiplomat