BMCE Bank and EBRD to finance wind farm in Morocco

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BMCE Bank and EBRD to finance wind farm in Morocco

According to local sources in Morocco, local commercial bank BMCE Bank will provide MAD 1.2 billion (US$124 million) to finance the development of the 120 MW Khalladi wind farm.

A high-ranking official at BMCE Bank told Moroccan Local daily Matin Eco interviewed a professional from the BMCE Bank who said that the bank will co-finance the project as part of a consortium that includes also the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).

EBRD may loan of up to €56 million which will be accompanied by concessional funding, provided by the Clean Technology Fund. The final decision of the EBRD board is expected on October 14.

The Khalladi project is due to start construction this year and will entail 40 vestas V90-3MW wind turbines, a 23km transmission line and a substation. The project is likely to be funded by equity and institutional investor debt.

The AfDB, through its Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa, awarded a $960,000 grant to the project sponsors in January 2014, to help fund the appointment of financial and legal advisers for the project and preparatory works.

The project, with a price tag of MAD 1.8 billion ($185 million), is being developed by a special purpose company, 70% owned by Saudi Arabia's ACWA Power Global Services LLC, 25% by ARIF, a North-Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa infrastructure fund managed by private equity manager Infra Invest, and 5% by UPC Renewables North Africa.

ARIF is a $100 million African investment fund founded by the European Investment Bank, African Development Bank (AfDB), Proparco, International Finance Corporation and the Belgium Investment Company for Developing Countries.

The power output of the plant, estimated at 340 GWh per year, will be sold to industrial enterprises and the surplus, if any, will be sold to national electricity and water utility company ONEE.

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