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FEATURE STORY

Egypt’s Extra Electricity to Power More than Five Million Households

December 10, 2015


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Giza North Power Plant is now connected to the country’s national grid.

Cairo Electricity Production Company

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The Giza North Power Project has total capacity of 2250 MW, sufficient to serve more than five million households
  • Around 3,000 jobs were created during the Giza North Power Project, 75% of them during construction
  • The thermal power plant is contributing to economic revitalization of neighboring communities.

The World Bank has been supporting Egypt to meet its growing demand for electricity and expand its capacity for generating it. A reliable and sustainable power supply is critical for the country’s economic growth, as well as for job creation, social services and public safety.

Egypt’s investments have not kept up with its rapidly growing demand of 6% a year. Population growth, the development of energy-intensive industries, and the increased use of electrical household appliances—particularly air conditioning—have all contributed.

Factories, small enterprises, and consumers are all benefiting from the new, more reliable electricity supply. “All the workshops in the entire neighborhood need a good supply of electricity, or else we will close our doors and let our workers go home,” said Mohsen, the owner of a carpentry workshop in Old Cairo’s Gamaleya neighborhood, which is famous for carpentry.  

“Like many Egyptian houses, we cannot live without electricity,” said Samiha, the mother of four children. “Last year’s school exams took place in summer. Thankfully, we had electricity and my children were able to study. No electricity, no educated kids.”

Over the past few years, the World Bank Group has been supporting the Government of Egypt in addressing key challenges, such as the shortage of electrical power. In doing so, the Group became an important development partner in Egypt’s energy sector through project financing for conventional and renewable generation of energy, and through scaling up the development of wind and solar power plants.

The Bank-financed Giza North Power Plant, which was recently connected to the national grid, is an example of Bank’s support to create reliable, efficient, and sustainable sources of power. It has total capacity of 2,250 MW, which is enough to serve more than five million households. The project increases Egypt’s available power capacity by 8%, so it will also improve the overall security and efficiency of the country’s electricity supply, thanks to the gas-fired, combined-cycle gas turbine (CCGT) that will use the most efficient technology to generate thermal power.

   
The plant adopted detailed measures in environmental management with the introduction of an air quality monitoring system equipped with meteorological monitoring. Results from this monitoring are recorded and reviewed to ensure compliance with Egyptian environmental law.


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Asad Alam Country Director for Egypt,Yemen and Djibouti (second to the right) with Cairo Electricity Production Company (CEPC) representatives and Community leaders from the neighboring areas.


“This plant will help Egypt ensure access to a reliable electricity supply that is critical for the country’s inclusive economic growth, as well as for job creation and achieving the country’s social development agenda. It will use natural gas as the main fuel, displacing less efficient generation and reducing emissions,” said Asad Alam, World Bank Country Director for Egypt, Yemen and Djibouti.

In 2010, the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors approved loan in the amount of USD600 then approved in 2012 another USD240 million for the additional financing of the Giza North Power Project. The European Investment Bank (EIB) and OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) contributed to the financing of the power plant, which is owned and operated by the Cairo Electricity Production Company (CEPC), a subsidiary of Egyptian Electricity Holding Company (EEHC).

Community Outreach and Benefits

Located on 70 feddans in the north of Giza on El-Beheiry canal, construction of the project was completed in four years. Around 3,000 jobs were created, 75% of them during construction and the rest for linked to the plant’s operation and maintenance. More than 1,000 workers have been hired from neighboring villages—all of whom learned new skills.

“I consider myself very fortunate,” said Khaled Karam, a young chemist who lives in the neighboring village of Al-Qatta and works on the project. “Not only I did I find a job that matched my education and specialization, but I was lucky to find it nearby. Gone are the days when I used to commute for more than three hours to go work in Cairo,”

In its efforts to maximize the outreach and engagement with neighboring communities, CEPC has set up a Social Facilitation Committee that has included community leaders, women and representatives of local Community Development Associations (CDAs), and implemented social accountability mechanisms to empower local stakeholders to channel their concerns through a simple, local-sensitive mechanism for handling complaints.

“We are proud to have this national project that is serving the entire country. Moreover, the entire area has been economically revitalized with flats being rented out and new markets opening up,” said Sheikh Abdelaziz Abood, a community leader in Abu Ghaleb, and member of the Social Facilitation Committee. “The project has been also contributing to infrastructure of our youth centers, schools, and our community associations,” he added.


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