Construction has begun at the 1,870-MW Gilgel Gibe 3 hydroelectric project in the Omo-Gibe River Basin, the state-owned Ethiopian Herald reports.
The Herald quoted the Gilgel Gibe project office saying contractor Salini Costruttori SpA of Italy began work in December at the project site, 240 kilometers southwest of the Addis Ababa. (HNN 7/25/06) Construction of the 240-meter-tall rockfill dam, tunnel, distribution, and water diversion works are under way, it said.
The US$1.75 billion project, called one of the biggest in sub-Saharan Africa, now is expected to be completed by 2013, officials said. Construction is being financed jointly by the Ethiopian government, the European Investment Bank, the African Development Bank, and through contractor’s equity.
Gilgel Gibe 3 is the third project to be built by Salini in the Omo-Gibe Basin, following 184-MW Gilgel Gibe, which is operating, and 420-MW Gilgel Gibe 2, which is under construction.