Ethiopia is determined to start an energy revolution through its gigantic hydroelectric project on the Nile. The Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), which requires 74 billion cubic metres to fill, is announced as the largest hydroelectric facility in Africa, with a capacity of 6,000 megawatts. In addition to the production and export of electricity, this dam should enable Ethiopia to develop irrigated agriculture, which is virtually non-existent, with the result that only 3% of the territory is covered by agricultural land.
During the celebration of the ninth anniversary of the start of construction work on the dam on April 1, 2020, the Ethiopian Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed, maintained the work schedule, including the filling of the dam, which should begin in July 2020. “The current coronavirus outbreak should not prevent us from completing the project,” he added, before emphasizing the symbol that this work represents. “For us it is the second most important thing after human life,” said Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, who also sent military troops to secure the workers on the site.