Progress for delayed Tarfaya project

MOROCCO: After much delay, the 300MW wind power project at Tarfaya, on Morocco's Atlantic coast, has moved forward.

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Moroccan conglomerate Nareva and the UK's International Power (IP) have signed a financing agreement worth $350 million with Moroccan state utility the Office National d'Electricite (ONE), according to local media. Local banks Attijariwafa Bank, Banque Marocaine du Commerce Extérieur (BMCE) and France's Banque Populaire are providing the funds.

"We expect the construction of Tarfaya to start in the near future once the final financing formalities have been completed," a spokesperson for IP told Windpower Monthly.

Nareva and IP were selected as preferred bidders in 2010 following a competitive tender launched two years previously. There was then a further delay when negotiations over the power purchase agreement (PPA) stalled. However, local media report that ONE has now signed a 20-year PPA with the consortium.

The plant is to be constructed on a build, operate and transfer basis. The original idea was that it would be brought on line in phases of at least 50MW each, with the first 200MW completed in 2013. No new timetable has been revealed.

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