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IFC grants $140m financing for Armenia's power sector

EBR Staff Writer Published 08 February 2017

The World Bank Group member, International Finance Corporation (IFC) has granted $140m loan for Armenia’s main power generating facilities to help boost the country’s clean energy supplies.

ContourGlobal Hydro Cascade, a subsidiary of power-generation company ContourGlobal, will use the funding to upgrade the 404MW Vorotan hydro-power complex, parts of which were commissioned almost four decades ago.

The financing package comprises a loan of $45m from IFC, $65m from the Netherlands Development Finance (FMO) and $30m from the German Investment and Development (DEG).

ContourGlobal Hydro Cascade general manager Ara Hovsepyan said: “We would like to thank the Government of Armenia for its work in facilitating these transactions.

“They provide a stable, long-term capital structure, which allows us to continue our work while making sure that the operational performance, safety, reliability, and efficiency of this plant are maintained at world-class standards.”

The funding is said to be first major international debt financing package for Armenia’s power sector.

Upon completion, the upgraded facility is expected to generate around 1,150GWh of electricity annually. It will also help reduce CO2 emissions of more than 55,000t per year.

IFC said that the investment could also open the door to additional private investment in the country’s vital infrastructure.

The Vorotan Cascade comprises three hydropower plants, which account to 15% of Armenia’s total electricity generation.

IFC said in a statement: "Increasing its capacity is key for Armenia, a country that imports fuel to cover around 90% of its energy needs.”

The World Bank Group member acquired ContourGlobal Hydro Cascade in 2015, to enter as an established private sector power developer and operator in Armenia.