French energy group Engie has achieved financial closure for the 100-MW Kathu concentrating solar power (CSP) project in South Africa. The company has lined up ZAR 9.2 billion (US$ 610 million) in financing.
The consortium developing the project, which is led by ENGIE (48.5%), includes a group of South African investors comprising SIOC Community Development Trust, the Investec bank, Lereko Metier and the Public Investment Corporation.
The project is funded by a mix of debt and equity. The debt is provided by a club of the following South African banks: Rand Merchant Bank, Nedbank Capital, ABSA Capital, Investec and the Development Bank of South Africa.
Kathu Solar Park is a 100 MW greenfield Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) project with parabolic trough technology and equipped with a molten salt storage system that allows 4.5 hours of thermal energy storage. It is situated in the Northern Cape Province, 600 km south-west of the capital Pretoria.
Spanish companies Sener Group and Acciona SA have started construction of the project. Acciona is leading the consortium that won the turnkey engineering, construction and commissioning contract. Sener is supplying the main technology, including its parabolic troughs.
In early May the power utility Eskom had been arranged as the power purchaser for the project. The power plant is slated to be operational in the second half of 2018.