Officials at the Ethiopian Ministry of Mines and Petroleum say that the government is finalizing plans to rescind an agreement with US-based energy firm GreenComm Tech. The agreement gave the firm the rights for the construction of a 3.6 billion USD oil refinery in the Somalia region.

The parties entered the agreement on April 28th, 2020 the same day that GreenComm Tech reportedly finalized a separate agreement with Hyundai Engineering and Construction. According to GreenComm Tech, Hyundai was supposed to oversee the construction of the refinery along with GreenComm but officials at Hyundai affirm that the agreement was never implemented.

The decision by the government to rescind the agreement comes after extensive reports by Quartz Africa revealed discrepancies across several facets of the agreement. Some of these discrepancies included the professional profile of the CEO of the firm, Nebiyu Getachew, the corporate license and level of expertise of the firm, and the bureaucracy surrounding Ethiopia’s licensing processes.

Presumably due to the reports on these discrepancies, Dr. Koang Tutlam, the State Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas made the announcement that his organization had reviewed the claims and found them credible enough to merit reneging on the agreement pending further investigations.

More developments are expected to follow.

Quartz Africa

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