East Africa’s huge opportunities in renewable energy have increased the demand for efficient and sustainable infrastructure in energy sector in the region.
According to Siemens Eastern Africa Chief Executive Officer, Lukas Duursema, the opportunities especially, in wind, thermal and hydro if well-developed can support skills development, create jobs and grow a more inclusive economy.
In a press statement, the CEO said Siemens has been active in the region for 157 years, and intends to support sustainable development with solutions and projects in Africa for Africa.
Duursema said: “We aim to contribute to local value creation and play a constructive role in shaping Africa‘s sustainable development through tangible and meaningful engagement.”
“We are in Africa as an investor, employee and supplier of efficient technologies and helping to increase the reliability of energy supply through an interconnector being built between Kenya and Ethiopia,” he added.
Announcing the company’s plan of setting up and expanding the East African footprint by making Ethiopia the headquarters of its operations, Duursema said Ethiopia and Kenya are taking the lead, as Tanzania and Uganda reinforce the emerging regional cluster of more than 300 million people.
The Siemens Country Manager for Kenya, Mr Johan Helberg said the high-voltage, direct current (HVDC) transmission link is one of the largest infrastructure measures in East Africa.
“The roughly 1,000 kilometres-long direct current transmission line, known as the Ethiopia-Kenya Power Systems Interconnection Project, will transmit environmentally friendly hydroelectricity from Ethiopia to Kenya,” he said.
In May this year, during the World Economic Forum, Siemens signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Uganda to cooperate in the areas of power supply, industry, transportation and healthcare and to focus on infrastructure investments and partnerships between public and private sectors.
In November 29-30 this year, Future Energy East Africa, in collaboration with the ministry of Energy and Petroleum, will host the region’s leading energy decision makers in the upcoming ‘‘Future Energy East Africa’ conference and exhibition in Nairobi.
The event will bring together stakeholders within the power value chain, which includes governments, power generation companies, transmission and distribution companies, off takers, developers, investors, equipment manufacturers and providers, technology providers, legal and consulting firms.