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Sunshine to have stake in greening economy

Sunshine to have stake in greening economy

Samuel Tafesse of Sunshine Construction and one of Ethiopia’s most successful businesspersons is set to build a solar park in Ethiopia. This follows the announcement made last year by Enel, an Italy-based corporation, of its intention to build a USD 120-million 100 megawatt solar park in collaboration Orchid Business Group.

“At the moment, we are exploring opportunities in power generation,” the 60-year old entrepreneur told Forbes Africa. “I wouldn’t want to give away too much but we have currently teamed up with Globeleq – one of Africa’s leading power companies to establish a 100 MW IPP solar park here in Ethiopia”.

Ethiopia has begun to embrace solar energy as an option to address its surging energy needs and also as a means to cut soaring energy costs as it aspires to move towards a manufacturing economy.

Emerging nations such as India have promoted the use of solar energy in place of coal. The use of solar energy has gained popularity because of its economical and environmental benefits. India, for instance, has a target to invest upwards of USD 100 billion by the year 2022 in solar energy.

As of last year, total global solar energy generation stood at only 303 GW, and this figure is expected to rise as new innovations continue to be rolled out.

Globeleq is a self-described “leading private power generation company in Africa”, involved in mega energy projects in a number of nations. It completed two mega renewable energy projects in South Africa, including the 50 MW PV De Aar Solar Power and the 50 MW PV Drogfontein Solar Power projects in 2014.

“Infrastructure projects like these boost local economies through delivery of clean and reliable electricity, creation of jobs and the development of skills that will increasingly be in demand as the industry grows,” former Globeleq CEO Mikael Karlsson said at the completion of the South African project.

The Reporter’s attempts to reach out to Sunshine for comments have not been successful by press time.

In a related news, at a meeting yesterday with Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalegn, Israel-based GIGAWATT GLOBAL announced plans to invest half a billion dollars in renewable energy. It intends to focus on solar and wind power and work with local universities on its implementation.