Global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright has advised a consortium of lenders, led by International Finance Corporation (IFC), on the US$ 653 million financing of 13 solar power projects in Egypt. The projects are being developed by six separate Sponsor groups as part of Round 2 of Egypt’s Feed-in-Tariff Financing programme and will form part of the Benban Solar Park, which, once complete, will be the largest solar installation in the world.
As well as IFC, the consortium of lenders includes the African Development Bank, the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), the Arab Bank of Bahrain, CDC, Europe Arab Bank, Finance in Motion, FinnFund, ICBC, and OeEB of Austria.
The transaction marks the largest private sector financing package for a solar photovoltaic facility in the Middle East and North African region, IFC’s largest collective investment in the energy sector in Egypt, and AIIB’s first financing in Africa.
The power plants will generate up to 752 megawatts of solar power and contributing to energy security in the region. The initiative, officially named the Nubian Suns Feed-in-Tariff Financing Program, is expected to provide power to over 350,000 residential customers and generate up to 6,000 jobs during construction.
Egypt’s Feed-in-Tariff programme is a major initiative that leverages private sector capital and expertise to support the country’s goal of generating 20 percent of its electricity from renewable resources by 2022. The Benban Solar Park, which will include 32 power plants in all, is a significant aspect of the initiative.
Andrew Hart, partner, Norton Rose Fulbright, comments:
“In a landmark financing for the MENA region, we are delighted to have assisted IFC and the other lenders on all 13 projects they are supporting on this round of Egypt’s Feed-in-Tariff programme.
“Egypt’s feed in tariff has opened up access to private capital that would have otherwise been much more challenging to access, marking an exciting future for Egypt’s renewable energy industry.”
The Norton Rose Fulbright team advising the lenders on these projects was led by London partner Andrew Hart and included partner Chris Down, of counsel Rosa Mottershead, senior associate Jamie Munro, associates Alexandra Jeffreys, Tim Han, Tim Wood, Inga Aryanova, Christina Jeong, Shah Jahan Khandokar and Paddy Mohen in London, and partner Paul Mansouri and of counsel Nick Robinson in Dubai.
The firm continues to operate at the forefront of the global renewables market having recently advised Marubeni Corporation and JinkoSolar Holding Co., Ltd in relation to the US$ 900 million financing for the Sweihan IPP in Abu Dhabi which will be one of the world’s largest solar PV projects in world once completed.
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