Egypt: solar projects secure international investment


In North Africa, an Egyptian renewable energy developer and Germany-based solar partner, have secured a $87 million syndicated loan for the construction and operation of two solar photovoltaic (PV) power plants at the Benban complex in Upper Egypt.

The funds were pooled from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the Green Climate Fund (GCF) and the Dutch Development Bank (FMO).

With a total capacity of 80MW, once completed that plants will be the largest solar installation in the world, with a planned total capacity of 1.8 GW, EBRD said in a statement.

International investment

Infinity Solar Energy SAE, an Egyptian renewable energy developer, and to ib vogt GmbH, an international solar developer established in Germany, will be responsible for the construction and operation of the plants.

EBRD explained: “ Each development will be funded through loans of $87 million under an A/B structure, comprising EBRD A Loans of $58 million, of which $44 million will be from the Bank’s own account and $14 million from the Green Climate Fund.

“FMO will provide B Loans of $29 million. The development consortium was supported by Synergy Consulting and Solizer, which acted as transaction advisors for the two projects.”

Ayaan Adam, Private Sector Facility Director for the Green Climate Fund, commented: “This first investment with the EBRD under our Egypt Renewable Energy Financing Framework project is a big step forward. It shows the potential for public and private climate finance to drive the transition to low-emission energy in support of Egypt’s climate goals.”

EBRD added: “The investment is part of the EBRD’s $500 million EBRD framework for renewable energy in Egypt, adopted by the Bank’s Board of Directors earlier this year. The framework aims to develop Egypt’s potential in renewables and strengthen private sector involvement in the power and energy sector.

Support for the framework has been provided by the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean (SEMED) Energy Efficiency Policy Dialogue Framework, funded by the European Union’s Neighbourhood Investment Facility, and the SEMED Multi-Donor Account.

Harry Boyd-Carpenter, Head of Power and Energy Utilities for the EBRD, said: “We are delighted to welcome Infinity and ib vogt as new partners in this important project, which will significantly change the way that Egypt generates energy.

“The expansion of renewables is crucial not only for the environment, but also for the wider economy. It will create jobs, increase energy security and reduce the burden on the economy. The introduction of a regulatory framework that private investors can rely on will ensure that all this happens at sustainable cost and affordable prices.”

Mohamed Mansour, CEO of Infinity Solar, said: “We are delighted to collaborate with the EBRD and its partners GCF and FMO on these two projects under the Egyptian feed-in tariff programme.

“We see this cooperation as a big step in achieving our capacity goals for the Egyptian market, and hope to see many more projects in the near future.”

Anton Milner, managing director of ib vogt, added: “We strongly appreciate the very constructive cooperation with our financing partners on these important projects. The successful application of public and private climate financing is key in driving the deployment of sustainable, low-emission energy technologies both for Egypt and on a global scale.”