Wind energy in Ethiopia: German company to raise USD 120mln for Aysha wind farm

A German corporate finance company, Deutsche Unternehmensfinanzierung, will raise USD 120 million for the financing of the Aysha wind farm project, according to company manager Philipp Schuller.

The company will facilitate the financing of the wind power pilot project of the wind farm project which will involve the installation of 60 wind turbines with an aggregate power production capacity of 60 MW, according to the project plan.

According to Philipp, the Aysha wind farm project will witness the involvement of private sector operators in the power sector, which, he said, will pave the way for securing “plenty of private funds.”

The investment in power infrastructure project in Ethiopia has been channeled solely through public sectors, the Ethiopian Electric and Power Corporation (EEPCo) and public institutions such as the World Bank, the Ethiopian Investment Bank and the Development Bank of Ethiopia, the managing director said.

“But there are indications that there is a strong interest in allowing the private sector to be involved in the power infrastructure projects,” he added.

“The African Development Bank has already demonstrated a strong interest in financing this project,” he said. “There will also be two German private companies, EnerVest and ReNewCo, involved in the financing of the project in the form of equity.”

According to Philipp, the first phase of the Aysha wind farm project, which will involve the installation of up to 40 wind turbines, each producing 1MW, will be completed in the middle of next year while the rest will be finalized in 2012.

EEPCo, the sole electric utility in the country, has so far identified seven wind farm sites with a potential production of up to 720 MW power by 2013.

By Hayal Alemayehu,