Mott MacDonald provides lenders technical due diligence on Egyptian windfarm

12 February 2018 Authored by Consultancy.africa

Egypt is looking to source around 20% of its energy from renewables by 2022 – reflecting a wider global effort to decrease reliance on fossil fuel. The Ras Ghareb wind farm is set to produce around 262.5 MW for the country. The lenders for the project are the Japanese Bank for International Corporation in coordination with commercial lenders SMBC and Sociéte Générale, to whom Mott MacDonald has provided technical due diligence.

The Ras Ghareb wind farm is a 262.5 MW plant, located around 20 kilometres out from the Egyptian city of Ras Ghareb. The new wind farm will be part of a much bigger wind project, which is touted to eventually become the biggest in North Africa – with a target set for the country to achieve 20% of its energy needs from renewable sources by 2022.

This Ras Ghareb is being developed by French multinational electric utility company ENGIE (40%) and partners Toyota Tsusho Corporation/Eurus Energy Holdings Corporation (40%) and Orascom Construction Limited (20%). The new farm has an investment tag of around $400 million, funded in part by Japanese Bank for International Corporation (JBIC) and partly by commercial lenders SMBC and Sociéte Générale. The wind farm will be operated by the consortium through a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with the Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company (EETC).

Mott MacDonald provides lenders technical due diligence on Egyptian windfarm

The project has successfully reached financial closure. Consulting firm Mott MacDonald acted as lenders’ technical advisor on the scheme and is now monitoring construction in an ongoing role. As part of the its analysis, the firm performed technical, environmental and social due diligence, covering everything from social and environmental impact to building compliance with international standards. The project is expected to be completed by the end of 2019.

Sébastien Sandmark, Mott MacDonald’s project director, said, “Our due diligence helped overcome a number of potential challenges during this project’s development, such as the very windy location of the project site which has meant that the installation of the wind turbines has had to be planned in specific seasons. Also, Ras Ghareb is located on a corridor for migratory birds, so special attention will be given to the construction activities taking place during migratory seasons.”

As countries across Africa increasingly move towards renewable energy, the consulting industry is faced with a sea of opportunity to advise on large scale transition projects. Mott MacDonald has supported a wide array of players across the renewables space with due diligence work, including global projects such as a solar energy project in Jordan early this year.

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