Saudi Fund for Development Approves $140 Million Loan to Ethiopia

By Staff Reporter

Saudi-Fund-Development-SFDDecember 19, 2019 ( -- The Saudi Fund for Development (SFD) has approved a $140 million loan to Ethiopia in an agreement signed on Thursday at the Prime Minister’s office of Ethiopia.

$75 million of the soft loan would be used for the construction of the 118-km Debre Marko-Mota road project in northern Ethiopia while the rest, $65 million, will be used for the implementation of One WaSH National Programme.

The agreement was signed by Ahmed Shide, Minister of Finance and Khaled bin Sulaiman Alkhudairy, Vice-Chairman and Managing Director of the Board of Directors of SFD.

“Since recent months, the Ethio-Saudi relations have been turning into a strategic partnership. Saudi Arabia has been financing the economic development in Ethiopia. Activities are underway to attract more investments from Saudi Arabia. Today’s loan agreement is one of the results of a growing partnership between the two states. SFD also has pledged to finance the Ethiopian homegrown economic reform program, Ahmed Shide said

“We appreciate the ongoing efforts by the government of Ethiopia to improve the livelihood of its people. We want to finance the economic reform in the country,” Alkhudairy said

Meanwhile, Saudi’s International Company for Water and Power Projects (ACWA POWER) has been chosen to carry out two solar energy development projects at a cost of $300 million.

Dicheto and Gad solar power projects will be implemented in Afar and Somali regional states, respectively, each with a projected generating capacity of 125 MW of electricity.   

ACWA POWER was picked as winner out of the 12 shortlisted companies as it offered 2.5260 US cents/kWh for both sites, which is the lowest solar power purchase tariff in Africa and one of the lowest globally.

According to Ahmed, The projects will have paramount importance in the supply of power to the people of the two regions. The agreement between Ethiopia and ACWA POWER is an example of the implementation of infrastructure projects in which foreign investors are directly involved based on international tender.

Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed presided over the signing of two agreements held at the Prime Minister’s office.

The Gulf Cooperation Council Interconnection Agency’s (GCCIA) last year said it is considering to undertake a two-year feasibility assessment study to examine the possibility of building an electricity cable between Saudi Arabia and Ethiopia via Yemen (and then either Djibouti or Eritrea) in order to have the landlocked country power the Kingdom’s economy upon the completion of its Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) sometime in the coming future.

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