TAQA closes $1.4bn financing for Morocco plant
Final agreements signed for 700MW expansion of Jorf Lasfar plant
Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA) has announced that it has signed final agreements to close the US $1.4 billion project financing for its current scheme to expand the Jorf Lasfar power station in Morocco.
The plant is currently the largest coal-fired power plant in the MENA region, and supplies 40% of Morocco’s total electricity output. TAQA’s expansion scheme will see the addition of a further 700 MW of capacity, boosting total output to 2,056 MW.
“This expansion project is a continuation of our commitment to Morocco, delivering critical national infrastructure and power to a growing economy. TAQA’s commitment to meet Morocco’s energy needs was not conditional on financing, as the project is already 80 per cent complete. But this financing shows that, for the right deal with the right structure, significant non-recourse funds can be attracted to the Middle East and North Africa at competitive rates,” said H.E. Abdulla Saif Al-Nuaimi, TAQA vice chairman.
TAQA has said that this is the largest project financing within Morocco for ten years, and marks the first time that Japanese and Korean export credit agencies have been involved in project finance within the country.
“The expansion of Jorf Lasfar will increase Moroccan power generation capacity by more than 10 per cent and is vital to enabling growth and creating jobs in the economy. Construction is well advanced thanks to the strong support of the Moroccan government and the Office National de l’Electricite et de l’Eau Potable (ONEE),” added TAQA’s MD in North Africa, Majid Iraqui.
The lenders are reportedly providing financing for around 75% of the total project costs, whilst TAQA itself is committing about $400 million in equity funding.
Banque Central Populaire, BNP Paribas, Societe Generale and Standard Chartered Bank are mandated lead arrangers for the credit facilities.