Toshiba Expands Into East Africa Through Ethiopian Power Project


Toshiba Expands in East Africa with Order in Ethiopia for Small Scale Geothermal Power Generation System for Wellhead

Toshiba Energy Systems & Solutions Corporation (hereinafter “Toshiba ESS”) has announced that the company, Toyota Tsusho Corporation and Turkish engineering company Egesim Energy Electro-Mechanic Construction Contracting Co., Ltd. have received an order of engineering, procurement and construction for Aluto Langano Geothermal Wellhead Power System in central Ethiopia, which is developed by the Ethiopian Electric Power (hereinafter “EEP”). Toshiba ESS will be in charge of supplying the steam turbine and the generator. This project will proceed under the Grant Aid scheme of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

Toshiba’s order in Ethiopia quickly follows their opening of the East African office last year to help tap into the huge investment opportunities in the region. In a recent interview, Iwasuke Shimada, MD Toshiba Africa and Kenya noted that one of the challenges they are facing in the East African Market is the fact that most people only know Toshiba for their consumer products, like laptops. “Few people know that we offer other solutions in the energy and infrastructure sector. Our challenge is to make them aware of the business–to-business and business-to-government component of our work, where we supply solutions and services to businesses like KENGEN and Kenya Power and Lighting Company (KPLC)”, noted Shimada.

Shimada added that their presence in the region is already being felt in the energy sector by helping the population access more enregy and increase profitability for companies like KPLC. “For instance, in East Africa, we have concluded MOUs with French, Chinese and Kenyan companies in the energy sector in order to deliver the solutions the region requires. In Kenya, we have supplied more than 24,000 power distribution transformers to Kenya Power and Lighting Company (KPLC),” Shimada explained.

Aluto Langano Geothermal Wellhead Power System is a 5 MW small scale geothermal power plant where EEP plans to commence commercial operations in August 2021. Toshiba ESS will deliver its small scale geothermal power generation system at this power plant. Aluto Langano is  located in East Shewa Zone, Oromia Region, Ethiopia.

The small scale geothermal power generation system that has been developed by Toshiba ESS generates power from geothermal resources with outputs ranging from 1 MW to 20 MW. Capable of being installed within a short period for early operation and it is a portable power generation system that can effectively utilize a small number of drilled wells.

Ethiopia is Africa’s second most populous nation with a population of over 100 million. Although the country is growing economically, its electrification rate stands at 30%* and the country therefore faces the need to increase its power facilities.

Ethiopia possesses an equivalent of roughly 10,000 MW* of geothermal potential resources and the country is planning to develop new geothermal power plants totaling a capacity of roughly 2,500 MW* by the year 2030.

Toyoaki Fujita, Business Development Executive at Toshiba ESS, said, “We are extremely proud to receive this facilities order, which is our first in Ethiopia for power plant. We have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on a comprehensive partnership in geothermal power with EEP in September 2014. Based on this MOU, we have been supporting them on human resources development activities such as training some of their executives and managers at our company utilizing various Japanese government support programs. When Prime Minister of Ethiopia came to Japan in August 2019, he visited our Keihin Product Operations to see our manufacturing technology of geothermal power. Going forward we will maintain ongoing initiatives in human resources development and keep contributing to the development of geothermal power generation in Ethiopia and East Africa.”


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