Wind turbines from Vergnet in Ethiopia

Vergnet, the sole wind turbines manufacturer in France, is eyeing the Ethiopian Electricity and Power Corporation’s (EEPCo) wind farm projects over the coming ten years, according to Marc Vergnet, president and owner of the company.

Vergnet is currently undertaking the Ashegoda wind farm project in Tigray. Projected to produce some 120 MW which will enter the national power grid, the Ashegoda wind power project involves the installation of 120 wind turbines.

Vergnet is currently constructing a 10-km access road for the installation of the first 30 wind turbines. It is expected to install all the 120 wind turbines by October 2012.

Vergnet eyes EEPCo’s wind energy projects. Vergnet won the 210 million euro contract in 2008, outbidding a couple of European and Chinese companies.

“It took us one year to put in place the finance,” Vergnet said. “It is the President of France, Nicolas Sarkozy, who facilitated the finance for the project.”

Unlike the standard versions, the wind turbine the French company is installing has two blades only.

“The Ashegoda wind power project is well under way,” Vergnet said. “Our objective is to be engaged in all of EEPCo’s wind energy project, develop local knowledge on wind power and deliver all the wind projects according to the schedule.”

EEPCo has identified nine wind farm projects, including Ashegoda, planned to be developed over the coming ten years.

Today, over 650 Vergnet wind turbines are operating throughout the world, and their availability rates remain high, even in sites subject to extreme condition

By Hayal Alemayehu,