Spanish firm Isolux Corsan has won a contract for $450m high-voltage direct current (HVDC) project in Africa as part of a consortium that includes Siemens.

Ethiopian Electric Power (EEPCO) and the Kenya Electricity Transmission (KETRACO) awarded the contract to design, develop and install the HVDC link enabling power transmission between the two countries.

The HVDC bipole will connect two converter stations at Suswa in Kenya and Sodo in Ethiopia expected through a 1,000km-long DC power line.

"The bipole will have a transmission capacity of up to 2GW.

The bipole will have a transmission capacity of up to 2GW.

The project has been financed by the World Bank and the African Development Bank, and is expected to improve energy exchanges between the countries, boosting their power capacities in view of future requirements.

Isolux Corsan will be responsible for the construction, installation and equipment in the converter and AC substations for the project, while Siemens will be delivering the HVDC core technology.

The transmission link is expected to start commercial operations by the end of 2018.

The HVDC contract is a first for Isolux Corsan in Ethiopia and strengthens its presence in Kenya.

The project reinforces the firm’s position in Africa as an engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor with presence in 16 countries.