ADDIS ABABA, 13 January 2021 – Ethiopian authorities broke ground over the weekend for a new $125 million dam in North Shewa, in the country’s northern Amhara Region.
The new dam, to be known as Ajima-Chacha, is expected to be completed in three years.
Ethiopia’s minister of water, irrigation and energy, Seleshi Bekele, presided over the ground breaking ceremony.
The Chinese Civil Engineering Corporation (CCEC) is building the dam in cooperation with the Water and Construction Works Corporation of the Amhara Region.
The dam walls will rise 45.5 meters into the air and measure 371 meters in length.
The artificial lake formed by the dam will hold 55 million cubic meters of water, according to official data cited Tuesday by the Amhara Mass Media Agency.
Ethiopia generates about 85 percent of its energy from hydroelectric plants and, on account of its enormous share of the waters of the continent, is often referred to as “Africa’s Water Tower”.
Addis Ababa has committed to invest 12 billion euros – a third of the country’s gross domestic product – to increase its hydroelectric power production level up to 40,000MW by 2035.