ZHU Gongshan, Chairman of GCL Group, attended the China-Africa CEO High-Level Dialogue, which was part of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC), in Beijing and delivered a speech. He said that the industrial and commercial circles and entrepreneurs of both China and Africa should take the responsibility for implementing the new policies, proposals, actions and initiatives put forward by President Xi Jinping at the FOCAC Beijing Summit. GCL Group, China Poly Group, and China-Africa Industrial Cooperation Fund will jointly implement the Ethiopia-Djibouti oil and gas project, form the East Africa oil and gas economic belt on its basis, and create an energy corridor by laying oil and gas pipelines.
GCL Group has been a leader in the new energy industry for years as the highest-ranking company in the industry on the list of the Top 500 Chinese enterprises. It is a comprehensive energy operation service provider with clear priorities and great advantages in its business development. Over the five years since the Belt and Road Initiative was first proposed, GCL Group has made smooth progress in its investment and cooperation projects in Africa and engaged itself deep in China-Africa cooperation in industrialization, infrastructure building, and green development, making its contribution to the social development, economic transformation, and the improvement of people’s livelihood in Africa.
According to Zhu, road network, power grid, pipeline network, and information network are the most important components of infrastructure building in Africa. The Addis Ababa-Djibouti Railway is a critical transportation line connecting Ethiopia and Djibouti and the supporting ultra-high-voltage power transmission network project build an overhead passageway for power transmission between the two countries. Then, the ongoing Poly-GCL Ethiopia-Djibouti oil and gas project will lay cross-border pipelines which will form another important part of infrastructure in East Africa.
As the largest energy project in Africa within the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative, the Ethiopia-Djibouti oil and gas project covers a total area of 117,000 square kilometers in the Ogaden Basin, approximately 1.5 times the area of Jiangsu Province. The proved natural gas reserve is 5,000 billion cubic meters with some oil reserve.
“In June, the Poly-GCL Ethiopia-Djibouti oil and gas project produced the first barrel of oil in the history of Ethiopia. Currently the team working to speed up pipeline building and the project will soon have an annual capacity of 3 million tons of LNG. The long-term goal is to build the total capacity to 10 million tons per year. After its completion, the project will drive the economic transformation in Ethiopia, bail the country out of foreign exchange shortage, and, to some extent, help China recover the loans it has extended to Ethiopia in US dollar. In Djibouti, GCL Group now joins hands with China Poly Group, China Merchants Group, and China Communications Construction Company Limited (CCCC) to plan and build a 10-million-ton oil refinery project, a 15-million-ton LNG project, a 1-million-kilowatt power generation project, and a seawater desalination and salt chemical project.” According to Zhu, “the Poly-GCL Ethiopia-Djibouti oil and gas project is warmly welcomed by local residents because GCL, making good use of its advantages in PV power generation, has produced clean electricity in a PV + power storage model to light up the life of local tribes. In addition, the field team also built roads and bridges, and dug wells for local residents to improve their living standard.”
The China-Africa CEO High-Level Dialogue was hosted by China Council for the Promotion of International Trade and participants came from 24 Chinese giants, including GCL, State Grid, SINOMACH, COMAC, CRRC, and CCCC, and 24 renowned African companies.