The Egyptian government is studying launching an electrical connection project with Ethiopia and Sudan through 500 kV electrical line connections at a length of 1,600 kilometres.
Government sources told Daily News Egypt that the electric connections have many economic benefits for the three countries, as well as securing plentiful energy sources for them.
The sources pointed out that the Ministry of Electricity previously conducted a study that includes the total cost of the project to be presented to financing institutions.
They noted that Ethiopia’s stubborn position on the establishment of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam without taking into consideration the dam’s possible impact on the water shares of downstream countries (Egypt and Sudan) halted the project.
The main crisis lies in the period needed to fill the dam, as Egypt fears an impact on its national water security, and calls for reducing the dam’s high storage capacity by more than half. The dam’s storage capacity reaches 74bn cubic metres.
The sources said that three Egyptian companies intend to launch new and renewable power plants in Ethiopia, amid the two countries’ efforts to boost economic bilateral ties.
Egypt’s Ambassador to Ethiopia Abu Bakr Hefni said that Egypt shares strategic and multi-aspect relations with Sudan and Ethiopia, in the short, medium and long terms.
The ambassador added that there are various investment projects that Egyptian businesspesons plan to establish in Ethiopia, including Elsewedy Electric, which offered to set up an Egyptian industrial zone in Ethiopia with investments of $120m, as well as other agricultural and pharmaceutical projects discussed during the recent visit of the Ethiopian prime minister to Cairo.
Hefni further added that potential Egyptian projects in Ethiopia also include solar and wind power plants, an Egyptian farm, and a fertiliser plant.