30 October 2012 – Globeleq Generation, an emerging markets power company, has announced the signature of financing for the 139 MW expansion of its existing 288 MW Azito gas-to-power plant near Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. Construction is expected to commence shortly, and to be completed in just over two years.

Gas pic

The project was financed on a limited recourse basis with 80% of the funding provided by lenders including the International Finance Corporation, European development finance institutions led by Proparco and BOAD, the West African development bank. The majority of the equity funds will be contributed by Globeleq and the remainder by its partner in the project, IPS (West Africa), a company majority owned by the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development. The Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), a member of the World Bank Group will be providing equity insurance for Globeleq’s investment.

“There has been excellent co-operation from all involved in both the private and public sectors to achieve financial close. Securing this milestone from the lenders, contractors and key participants, including the government of Côte d’Ivoire, indicates their confidence in Globeleq, the stakeholders and the excellent operating record of the Azito facility.”Globeleq’s CEO, Mikael Karlsson says. “This additional generation will provide much needed energy, a key driver in the development of the local economy and improvement in living standards of the people of Côte d’Ivoire.”

The new technology to be installed at the 427 MW plant will not need to use any additional fuel and therefore will not create any further carbon emissions. Once operational, the additional electricity will be sold to the privately owned electricity company, CIE through a 20 year concession, making it one of the most affordable and efficient thermal generation facilities in the country.

Paul Kunert, Globeleq’s head of business development for Africa and Asia says, “Azito already has adedicated and skilled operations and maintenance team. Earlier this year we appointed a construction manager to oversee the project through to completion. He is engaging with the local supply chain and the EPC contractor to ensure that local people will have the best opportunities for recruitment and selection of suppliers.” It is expected that more than 1,000 jobs will be created during construction.