1.1. Context- Energy Sector and Ethiopia Gender
Ethiopia’s power sector is underpinned by a broad policy, legal, and strategic framework and structured by the National Energy Policy (2013; updated in 2019). The Ministry of Water and Energy (MoWE) oversees planning, coordination, and monitoring of overall energy development. In 2013, through the Council of Ministers Proclamation No. 302/2013, the vertically integrated utility, Ethiopian Electric Power Corporation was unbundled into two public enterprises: (a) the Ethiopian Electric Power (EEP), responsible for generation, transmission, and system operations; and (b) the Ethiopian Electric Utility (EEU) responsible for power distribution, sales, and customer services. The Proclamation also established a regulatory agency, the Ethiopia Energy Authority (EEA) which was recently reorganized with added regulatory responsibility on petroleum and petroleum products and renamed as Petroleum and Energy Authority (PEA).
Ethiopia faces the third highest energy access deficit in Sub-Saharan Africa with an
electricity access rate of 51 percent in 2020, leaving over 56 million people without
electricity. About 93 percent of urban houses are connected to the grid (99.9 percent in Addis Ababa), while only 40 percent of rural households have access to electricity services – mainly through standalone solutions. More than half of those connected to the grid are not formally registered as consumers with the utility. Per capita electricity consumption in Ethiopia is 69 kWh compared to world average of about 3,131 kWh. Launched in 2005, the Universal Electricity Access Program (UEAP) helped the electricity grid reach within 2.5 kms of 65% of all households by 2015. The National Electrification Program (NEP) was launched in 2017 and presented an investment roadmap and action plan for achieving universal electricity access by 2025 through grid and off-grid solutions, and 96% on-grid access by 2030. The NEP was designed to have a focus on fast-paced grid connections roll out, off-grid access program with strong private sector participation, and explicit cross-sectoral linkages with the productive and social service sectors. The updated version of the NEP (NEP 2.0) was launched in 2019 and presented a full-fledged integrated approach to electrification, building on best practices and incorporating off-grid solutions to complement grid electrification.

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