The Eastern Electric Highway, a grid line connecting Ethiopia and Kenya, is expected to be complete by June according to the Kenyan Energy Cabinet Secretary Charles Keter. The grid is going to be the longest transmission line in Eastern and Central Africa.
The Ethiopia-Kenya inter connector is Kenya’s second cross-border grid link, the first being the Olkaria-Lessos line linking with Uganda. Connecting the two countries at the common border city of Moyale, the Eastern Electric Highway stretches over 1,040 kilometers long. As it stands construction is fully complete on the Ethiopian side and 90 percent complete on Kenya’s side.
Kenya’s energy needs are expected to be more than met with the completion of the grid as Kenya’s current maximum consumption stands at 1,900 MW and the grid is expected to generate 2,000 MW in both directions.
The project was funded by the Kenyan Government, African Development Bank, French Development Bank, and the World Bank at a cost of 620 million USD.
While all the power grids in Kenya use alternating currents, the Eastern Electric Highway is going to be a direct current grid which is why the project has taken longer, aside from the fact that the grid is longer on the Kenyan side as well.