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GE, Other Firms Commit $9 Billion to ‘Power Africa’

Jessica Lyons Hardcastle

GEGeneral Electric and other companies have committed to investing more than $9 billion in President Obama’s Power Africa plan to bring more than 10,000 MW of electricity to sub-Saharan Africa.

The US government will invest more than $7 billion in financial support over the next five years to develop geothermal, hydro, wind and solar energy, and help countries build out power generation and transmission, according to a White House fact sheet.

Power Africa will also receive billions from US and international companies — which stand to make a good deal of money from providing power to Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria and Tanzania.

The White House says it has received initial commitments from seven private-sector partners, which will support the development of more than 8,000 MW of new electricity generation. These commitments include:

  • General Electric commits to help bring online 5,000 MW through its technologies, expertise and capital in Tanzania and Ghana.
  • Heirs Holdings commits to $2.5 billion of investment and financing in energy, generating an additional 2,000 MW of electricity capacity over next five years.
  • Symbion Power commits to $1.8 billion in investment to support 1,500 MW of new energy projects in Power Africa countries over the next five years.
  • Aldwych International commits to developing 400 MW of wind power in Kenya and Tanzania, which will represent the first large-scale wind projects in each of these countries, and an associated investment of $1.1 billion.
  • Harith General Partners commits to $70 million for wind energy in Kenya and $500 million across the African power sector via a new fund.
  • Husk Power Systems will install 200 decentralized biomass-based mini power plants in Tanzania, providing affordable lighting for 60,000 households.
  • The African Finance Corporation will invest $250 million in the power sectors of Ghana, Kenya and Nigeria, catalyzing $1 billion in investment in sub-Saharan Africa energy projects.

GE will likely be the biggest beneficiary of the $7 billion in US taxpayer dollars that will underwrite Power Africa, Forbes reports. Federal guarantees will reduce the company’s financial risks in Africa and give it a competitive advantage against Chinese companies looking to invest in Africa.

Last month, GE signed an MoU with the Ghana government to build a 1,000 MW power plant, Ventures Africa reports. Forbes says this plant would likely be fueled with natural gas from the multi-billion-dollar Jubilee offshore field, in which Texas-based Anadarko Petroleum has a large stake.



One comment on “GE, Other Firms Commit $9 Billion to ‘Power Africa’

  1. There are only 2 ways to produce electricity.
    1) Efficiently
    2) In Efficiently

    These Countries Have Natural Gas, and natural gas even at power plants can be consumed to near 100% Energy Efficiency.

    The day of Wasting Energy, blowing a Lot Of HOT Exhaust into the atmosphere Has To Come To A Stop.

    If America is going to go into Africa and help them as a country, as nations, Lets Help Them Do It Efficiently.

    There is no way that we want to help them to become Energy Inefficient, Do we?
    That would be so Stupid.

    Lets do it Right. If America is going to do something ~ It gets Done The Right Way.

    I look forward to working with this Group At Making A Global Difference.

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