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Ethiopia to set up massive data center amid Bitcoin mining boom

Nairobi: Ethiopia An initial agreement has been signed to develop infrastructure for data mining And artificial intelligence training operations, the government’s strategic investment arm said.
ethiopian investment holdings (EIH) initially said in a social media post on Thursday that a memorandum of understanding has been signed with a subsidiary for the $250 million project. based in hong kong West Data Group, but it later removed references to the deal value and the company’s identity.
EIH, West Data Group and an official at the Information Network Security Administration, which oversees data mining in Ethiopia, did not respond to requests for comment about the deal.
Bloomberg reported last week that Ethiopia has become a major destination bitcoin mining – which an Ethiopian official referred to as “data mining” and “high-performance computing” in a statement to the news agency – as the government authorized the practice in 2022.
Bitcoin miners, whose computers compete to solve complex algorithms and consume large amounts of electricity, are attracted by low electricity costs in the East African nation, the report said.
China banned crypto trading and mining in 2021 to control financial risks and reduce energy consumption.
Ethiopia has about 5,200 MW of installed generation capacity, about 90% of it from hydropower and the remaining 10% from wind and thermal sources.
It is also finalizing the construction of the Grand Ethiopia Renaissance Dam (GERD), which has an estimated installed capacity of 5,150 MW.
About 40% of Ethiopia’s population of 120 million lack access to electricity.

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