The government hired three Chinese and one Spanish firm for 12 small-scale solar energy development projects. The companies, hired by the Ethiopian Electric Utility, will be electrifying 67,700 rural homes in all parts of the country. The projects will be built in three areas of Oromia Regional State, two areas in Amhara and Southern Nations & Nationalities Peoples’ regional states each, and one each in Somali, Tigray, Afar, Benishangul Gumuz and Gambella regional states. The projects are jointly financed by the World Bank and the government of Ethiopia, which raised 8.5 million dollars and 59.6 million Br, respectively. About 25 projects are in the design phase, and the African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved 15 million dollars in loans and 100 million dollars in credit grants for these projects. The World Bank Group approved 400 million dollars of credit grants for solar power development projects. The World Bank has also provided loans and grants worth 375 million dollars for the first phase of the National Electrification Program launched in 2017, aimed at both integrated grid and off-grid electricity access with the latter to comprise 35pc by 2025.
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