Renewable energy investments

With COP22 well underway in Morocco, the north African's Agency for Solar Energy (MASEN) has confirmed the country’s first green bonds for renewable energy, Reuters reported.

According to PV Magazine, the bond issue, which MASEN is leading with $100 million bond for three solar projects, will form part of the Noor 170MW solar plant dubbed Noor PV 1, which will consist mainly of concentrated solar thermal power (CSP).

COP22: green bonds

“The issuance of the green bonds amounts to 1.15 billion dirhams ($118 million), and will fund the solar PV projects in Laayoune, Boujdour and Ouarzazate.

“The World Bank also announced the purchase of $100 million in World Bank green bonds by the central bank of Morocco, Bank Al-Maghrib, which will be used for the bank’s reserves management," PV Magazine reported.

The green bonds mature on 15 December 2019 and have a semi-annual fixed rate coupon payment, media explained.

World Bank group president Jim Yong Kim, said: "We need a global financing system that’s fit for purpose to factor in climate risks and opportunities."

"Developing a green bond market is key to mobilising the private capital flows needed to address climate change," Kim added.

The governor of Bank Al-Maghrib, Abdellatif Jouahri, commented: "Having become increasingly aware of the effects of climate change at the COP22 Marrakesh, countries are now specifying how to achieve commitments made [last year] in Paris.

"Bank Al-Maghrib’s investment in World Bank green bonds has been made in that context."

Driving clean power

Last month, three international banks committed their support towards the country’s energy efficiency drive.

Global financial institutions, namely the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the Agence Française de Developpement (AFD) as well as the European Investment Bank (EIB) announced their partnership to backing sustainable energy developments in the north African country.

Anadolu Agency reported that the European Union Neighbourhood Investment Facility (EU NIF) will also be joining this partnership.

Media quoted the EBRD's statement, issued on Wednesday, which announced that the banks will be providing a €35 million ($38 million) financing facility to BMCE Bank of Africa and its leasing subsidiary Maghrebail.

According to the Anadolu Agency, the finance line is the third under the Morocco Sustainable Energy Financing Facility (MorSEFF), which is a programme for sustainable energy investments through financial institutions.

“BMCE Bank of Africa will on-lend to small and medium-sized enterprises and corporates in the commercial and industrial sectors, including commercial construction and energy service companies,” EBRD said in a statement issued last month.

Othman Benjelloun, chairman of BMCE Bank of Africa Group, said at the time: “In the context of COP22, it is with enthusiasm that we are renewing our partnership with the EBRD, AFD and EIB for a new MorSEFF programme to support companies in their environmental approach and position ourselves as the reference bank in these fields."