Masdar and Ethiopia sign agreement to develop 500MW of solar

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Ethiopia’s Finance Minister Ahmed Shide and Masdar CEO Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi. Image: Masdar via Twitter.

Abu Dhabi-based renewables company Masdar is continuing its international expansion with new plans to develop 500MW of solar in Ethiopia through a partnership with the country’s government.

The company signed a memorandum of understanding that is said to include the development, construction, and operation and maintenance of PV plants in the African country.

The initiative represents a “significant step forward” for Ethiopia’s efforts to diversify its energy mix, Masdar CEO Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi was quoted as saying by Emirates News Agency.

“Masdar has been a catalyst for renewable energy and clean-tech innovation in more than 30 countries around the world, and we look forward to working with the government of Ethiopia to help deliver universal access to electricity for all its people,” he added.

During a meeting with Masdar executives, Ethiopia’s Finance Minister Ahmed Shide stressed the importance of having adequate energy infrastructure to support the country’s development and growing population.

With the country looking to strengthen collaborations with the private sector, it currently has 17 approved public-private partnerships, eight of which are related to solar energy.

Masdar’s solar development efforts in Africa have seen the company complete 30MW of PV in Egypt, while it is also working alongside EDF and Green Africa to deploy a project in Morocco that will feature PV, concentrated solar power and energy storage.

Founded by the Abu Dhabi government in 2006, Masdar now has an operational or under-development generating capacity of more than 10GW, and is currently increasing its solar portfolio in markets such as Indonesia, Azerbaijan and Israel.

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