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AfrElec: Ethiopia signs joint development agreement with UAE’s Masdar for 500-MW solar PV facility

Ethiopia and United Arab Emirates renewable energy company Masdar have signed a joint development agreement (JDA) for a construction of two solar photovoltaic (PV) plants with a combined generation capacity of 500 MW.

The deal, announced by Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed on Wednesday, January 18, could potentially allow Ethiopia to significantly expand its power generating capacity and also diversify its energy mix, a key part of Abiy's industrialisation drive, Reuters reports.

“Pleased to see the signing of a joint development agreement (JDA) between the Government of Ethiopia and Masdar to develop two solar photovoltaic plants,” Abiy said in a tweet, adding the two plants would have a combined generation capacity of 500 MW.

According to data from the state-run Ethiopian Electric Power, Ethiopia currently has a total installed energy capacity of about 4,898 MW, with 9% of it coming from hydroelectric power. Abiy did not give details on where the plants will be located or the cost to build them.