A financial close has been reached to pave way for expansion of Azito gas-fired power plant in Côte d’Ivoire. Independent power producer Globeleq and IPS (West Africa) made the announcement and said the close was reached by their subsidiary, Azito Energie SA.
Azito power plant is now one of the most modern, efficient power plants in West Africa, providing 25% of Côte d’Ivoire’s electricity capacity. It currently generates 460 MW of power.
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Phases 1 and 2, which comprised of two simple cycle gas turbines (145 MW each), have been in commercial operation since 1999 and 2000, respectively. Including the recent capacity expansion (Phase 3), the total investment in the Azito Power Plant amounts to US $615m.
Phase 3 was financed by shareholder equity (Globeleq and Industrial Promotion Services West Africa (IPS(WA)), a subsidiary of the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development (AKFED)), and loans from international and bilateral development agencies.
Phase four works will combine the finalization of the technical MXL2 upgrade which added 30 MW to the plant’s existing capacity during 2019. It will also have the latest combined cycle gas turbine technology in the plant which will allow the deployment and monetisation of Côte d’Ivoire’s domestic gas reserves in the most efficient and environmentally effective and sustainable way.
Upon completion, the power plant will see Azito supplying around 713 MW, which will be approximately 30% of Côte d’Ivoire’s installed capacity.Construction has already started with first power expected in 2020. All electricity will be sold to the State of Côte d’Ivoire under a 20-year concession agreement.
The project is being financed on a limited recourse basis with a debt financing package of US $291m provided by the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the African Development Bank (AfDB), the West African Development Bank (BOAD), the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) and a pool of European Development Finance Institutions (EDFIs) including the Société de Promotion et de Participation Pour la Coopération Economique (PROPARCO), the Belgian Investment Company for Developing Countries (BIO), the German Investment Corporation (DEG), the Emerging Africa Infrastructure Fund (EAIF) – an Africa-focused debt fund managed by Investec Asset Management, and the Netherlands Development Finance Company (FMO).