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Opposition from local authorities to UK private equity investor Actis’ planned takeover of French operator Veolia Environnement’s electricity, water and sanitation concessions in Morocco may be explained in part by a shift in political and popular opinion away from privately financed projects and concessions back to a greater role for local politicians and the state. Morocco is not alone in this: public/private partnership models that give public bodies, and the politicians who lead them, more control are increasingly in vogue.

Ghana | Rwanda | Ethiopia | Morocco

China International Water & Electric Corporation (CWE) has signed a $325m engineering, procurement and construction contract with the Ministry of Energy and Water Resources for the 72MW Menchum hydro scheme. The project, which involves building a concrete main dam on the Menchum River in Cameroon’s Northwest Region, will take an estimated 40 months to build. CWE is also building the Lom Pangar dam on the Sanaga River.

Issue 254 - 16 May 2013

Ethiopia: FEACC arrests


The Federal Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (FEACC) has announced the 10 May arrest of 13 high-level government officials on charges of corruption. Those arrested include Ethiopian Revenues and Customs Authority director-general (with ministerial rank) Melaku Fenta, his deputy, Gebrewahid Woldegiorgis, and the authority’s chief prosecutor, Eshetu Semayat. Local media reports say some businessmen have also been arrested as part of the FEACC investigation, including KK Trading’s Ketema Kebede, Intercontinental Addis Hotel owner Simachew Kebede and Netsa Trading owner Nega Egziabher.

Issue 180 - 05 February 2010

Battling over history


The NDC government is unhappy with the original contracts signed by the Jubilee partners, especially the Kosmos deal. Analysts say they lacked rigour, although this rather reflected the prevailing situation: Kosmos and a few other IOCs took acreage in highly speculative deals, in a frontier with a poor track record for exploration and production.


Renewables projects are attracting strong interest from financiers, with Morocco offering particularly strong incentives for investors, writes John Hamilton

Algeria | Morocco | Tunisia

The Ministry of Energy is seeking bids from consultants interested in conducting a feasibility study for the 100MW Kholombidzo hydroelectric power plant on the Shire River. The study, financed by the African Development Bank, will look at the technical and economic feasibility of the project, social and environmental impacts, investigate options for damming or diverting water flow, and prepare preliminary engineering designs and cost estimates.


The Ministry of Mines, Industry and Energy has finalised a contract with KBR to provide a conceptual study and associated project management services for the development of a low complexity, modular 20,000 b/d refinery at Mbini.

Equatorial Guinea
Issue 244 - 29 November 2012

Republic of Congo: Dry well for Murphy


Murphy Oil Corporation has announced that its Opale Marine-1 well in the Mer Profonde Nord permit was unsuccessful and has been plugged and abandoned. The total net cost of the well is estimated at $48m.

Congo Brazzaville

The construction of a wind tower factory in the Coega Industrial Development Zone is more than 60% complete, according to Coega Development Corporation (CDC) head of marketing and communications Ayanda Vilakazi. The project is being developed by South Africa’s DCD Group and the state-owned Industrial Development Corporation and CDC.

South Africa

The government has given conditional approval for the sale of Heritage Oil Corporation’s assets to Tullow Oil, paving the way for development of the Albertine Graben’s oil resources, while Tullow Uganda has also received approval for its subsequent farm-down of 33% stakes to CNOOC and Total.


It’s easy to announce the demise of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), especially after April’s board meeting was obliged to give virtually all candidate countries more time to provide the necessary figures (AE 185/24).


Zimbabwe provided one of the most impressive delegations to the 2019 Africa Energy Forum, where new energy and power development minister Fortune Chasi explained how a government committed to reform was working hard to reach its target of 11GW electricity generation capacity, from around 2GW now. After years of chaotic or no planning, Chasi reported that “an integrated resource plan is under way”, while licensing procedures were being eased for private power investors.


The state Geothermal Development Company is inviting bids from companies to supply and install a 5-10MW modular power plant for the Menengai phase I geothermal project in Nakuru county. Work will include design, manufacture, supply, installation and commissioning of the plant, and training of GDC instructors. The project is part financed by the African Development Bank, and bids are due by 6 January 2014.

Issue 203 - 18 February 2011

Mauritania: New oil minister


President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz has named a new oil energy and mines minister, Taleb Ould Abdi Vall, who had been head of state mining company Société Nationale Industrielle et Minière (SNIM) since August 2009.


Africa Renewable Energy Fund (Aref) manager Berkeley Energy is looking for consultants to carry out a review of the grid network and the possibilities for connecting new hydropower projects in Cameroon. Aref is considering investing in a pipeline of projects with capacities of between 40MW and 60MW. Expressions of interest are due by 12 October.Contact: Edward Kihara, Berkeley Energy Africa Ltd, Springette Office Park Block F2, Nairobi, Kenya. Tel: +254 795 740 736. Email: edward.kihara@berkeley-energy.com.