10 Most Impressive Mega Construction Projects in Ethiopia

Ethiopia is among East Africa countries that has been ranked to have a fertile land for construction business to flourish. The construction industry in the region is growing and offering a green market through the various ongoing mega projects.

Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam US $4.8bn

he GERD project has been under construction since 2011. It is in the Benishangul-Gumuz Region of Ethiopia, about 15 km (9 mi) east of the border with Sudan. At 6,450 MW, the dam will be the largest hydroelectric power plant in Africa when completed, as well as the 7th largest in the world.

The project is currently 71% complete Once completed, the reservoir will take from 5 to 15 years to fill with water. It has however faced various challenges including the regional dispute over the flow of river Nile, delays and also cancellation of the initial contract with METEC which is run by the Ethiopian Military.

Addis Ababa-Djibouti railway US $4bn

The 752.7km Ethiopia-Djibouti railway modernisation project, also known as the Addis Ababa-Djibouti railway, is the first modern electrified railway line in East Africa.

The project is jointly owned the governments of Ethiopia and Djibouti and constructed by China Railway Group and China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC). The modernisation is expected to provide landlocked Ethiopia with faster access to the port of Djibouti.

The railway connecting Ethiopia with Djibouti via Dire Dawa is a 780km metre-gauge line opened in 1917. It is the only railway line that connects landlocked Ethiopia with Djibouti Port, a major cargo entry point, but deteriorated due to a lack of maintenance and management.

Genale Dawa III hydroelectric power plant

Built by a Chinese firm – China Gezhouba Group – Genale Dawa III hydroelectric plant has consumed a total investment outlay of US $451m, out of which about US $67.8m was covered by the Government of Ethiopia. The remaining was covered by a loan.

The project was initially launched in 2010, but was temporarily suspended for more than a year due to certain setbacks related to resettlement of residents living close to the dam. The completion of the project is said to help increase the country’s electric power generation capacity to 4654 MW from the existing 4,200 MW; and help enhance the economic benefits of Genale and Dawa communities through expanding irrigation development.

Lapsset project

LAPSSET was launched on March 2, 2012 by the then Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki, late Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi, and South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir.

largest Airport in Africa

Ethiopia is set to construct the largest airport in Africa in Bishoftu, a town located 39km South East of the capital Addis Ababa. The US $5bn airport is expected to cover an area of 35 square kilometers and will have a capacity to handle 100 million passengers every year.

As it stands, Bole International Airport has a capacity to handle 19 million passengers annually. The new airport is also expected to significantly reduce congestion at Bole. The rapid growth of Ethiopian Airlines, being the largest airline in Africa by fleet size and revenue, has not kept up with the air infrastructure.

Mesob Tower

The 70-storey development will be located in the country’s capital city, in Addis Ababa. It will be 250 metres high and will sit on a 20,000 square meters of land. The US $681m project will feature hotels, shopping malls, a cultural center representative of all regions of Ethiopia, a gym and a golf club, among other things. The development is projected to be completed in five years’ time.

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