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The Ethiopian Electric Power Corporation (EEPCo) is looking for another financier for the construction of the Chemoga-Yeda hydropower plant, whose construction is lagging behind schedule due to lack of finances.
Chemoga-Yeda hydropower, being built on the outskirts of Debre Markos, located 299Km north of Addis Ababa in the Amhara National Regional State, was expected to cost 555 million dollars, according to the September 2009 contract that was signed between the Chinese Sinohydro Corporation and EEPCo.  It was supposed to be carried out in two stages and generate 278MW at completion. 
However the project, officially awarded to Sinohydro Corporation, three years ago, was expected to be handed over to EEPCo in 2013, but it is not going according to plan.
The Chemoga-Yeda hydro power project that contributes less than 1 percent for Abay (Blue Nile) River was expected to be financed by the Chinese Import Export (EXIM) Bank. But the loan provider has not released the necessary finance.
Mihiret Debebe, CEO of EEPCo, told Capital that the corporation is now exploring other means to realize the project. He said that the government is assessing other financiers to complete the construction of the dam. “But we will give priority to the deal that was signed between EEPCo and the Chinese construction firm in 2009,” the CEO said.
Mekuria Lemma, EEPCo’s Corporate Planning head, told Capital that some external investors are already approaching the corporation to finance the Chemoga-Yeda project. “We are now evaluating the financiers to select the best one,” he added. “But we are still hoping that the Chinese will honour the contract because our deal has not been cancelled,” he said.
According to our sources, the first financier (Chinese EXIM Bank) is dragging its feet to release the necessary funds due to the conflicting interests of downstream countries on the Nile Basin. These countries have been lobbying the Chinese government to delay funding.
Experts said that the Chemoga-Yeda River contributes less than one percent, and does not have a significant effect on the total volume of the Blue Nile. 
According to the initial plan, the project was to be completed in four years and nine months, and will consist of the construction of five dams at Chemoga, Yeda, Sens, Getla and Bogena rivers. The reservoirs of these dams will be interconnected and are expected to generate 278MW.
At the end of the Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP), EEPCo plans to generate up to 10,000MW of power compared to the current output of a little over 2000MW. The Chemoga-Yeda project was one of the hydro power projects expected to be completed before 2015, which is the end of the GTP.
Ethiopia contributes 86 percent of the total volume of water to the Nile River, which flows on to the Mediterranean Sea. The downstream countries (Egypt and Sudan) have always been opposed to Ethiopian dam and irrigation projects, especially on tributaries to the Blue Nile River. 
EEPCo, which is the sole electric power supplier and manager of power plants in the country, is undertaking the construction of several hydropower plants in the country, including on the Nile Basin. In addition, there are plans to erect additional power plants in the Nile basin which can generate over 25,000 MW of the country’s hydroelectric power output estimated at 45,000 MW.