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Danish wind systems manufacturer Vestas has been tasked with providing a customised solution for the 159MW Parc Eolien Taiba N’Diaye, Senegal’s first large utility-scale wind energy project.

The wind farm claimed to be the largest wind project in West Africa, will expand the country’s generation capacity by 15%, supporting the development of affordable renewable energy and diversify Senegal’s energy mix. Read more: Financial close for Senegal’s first utility-scale wind farm announced

The engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract was signed with Parc Eolien Taiba N’Diaye, a company majority-owned by Lekela - an experienced renewable energy company that has developed 1.3GW of wind and solar projects across Africa - and partly-owned by French developer Sarreole that has been part of the project from its beginning.

Components for the wind power project

The order includes the supply, transport, installation and commissioning of 46 V126 3.45MW turbines, as well as an Active Output Management 5000 (AOM 5000) service agreement for the operation and maintenance of the wind park over the next 20 years.

“This is a very special order for us, since together with Lekela, we are delivering a project that will represent 20% of the country’s energy mix and have a positive impact on Senegalese communities, providing opportunities for local employment while responding to the country’s energy challenges,” said Nicolas Wolff, Vestas’ VP Sales Region Western Mediterranean.

Chris Ford, Lekela’s chief operating officer, also commented: “This is a major milestone for Senegal, and for Lekela. As the first utility-scale wind power project in the country, Taiba N’Diaye forms a critical component of Senegal’s clean energy strategy.

“The project will create an impact that lasts for generations. We have many people to thank in reaching this point, not least the communities, stakeholders and partners like Vestas who we’ve worked closely with in recent months.”

Financing the project

Vestas’ long-time financing partner EKF Denmark’s Export Credit has backed the project with a €140 million ($163 million) export loan, securing the project’s financial stability and maximising the customer’s return on investment.

“It is a core competence of EKF to ensure financing for ground breaking projects like. This is a very solid project with a strong commitment from the Senegalese government, Vestas - a world leader in sustainable energy solutions - and Lekela an experienced developer of sustainable energy projects in Africa. All very important factors when it comes to ensuring financing. It is our hope to see more projects like this in the region in the future”, says Anette Eberhard, CEO of EKF.

The project is said to be in advanced stage of development, ready for construction.

Turbine delivery, as well as commissioning are planned to be accomplished in three phases: deliveries between the second and the third quarters of 2019, whilst commissioning between the third quarter of 2019 and the first quarter of 2020.