Gamesa to form Brazilian 'university'

BRAZIL: Manufacturer Gamesa and the Bahia state government have signed a memorandum of understanding, part of which could see the establishment of the 'Gamesa University' training centre for operation and maintenance skills.

Gamesa has more than 1GW of installed capacity in Brazil, according to the company

Gamesa said the training facility could be open by 2016 and train more than 200 people a year.

The agreement signed with the state government in northern Brazil is designed to promote skills and innovation in the region, Gamesa said.

There are also plans to set up a wind-turbine testing unit in conjunction with the public university of Bahia, and to establish component-certifying laboratories.

"This alliance highlights Gamesa's strategic commitment to Brazil, and very particularly the state of Bahía, one of the country's windiest regions," said Gamesa chairman Ignacio Martín.

Bahia is a hive of wind activity in Brazil, with more than 1GW of operational capacity, according to Windpower Intelligence, the research and data division of Windpower Monthly.

Gamesa already has a production facility in the state at Camicari as does fellow manufacturer Acciona.

Brazil has strict local content sourcing rules. The national development bank, BNDES, is increasing levels of local content supply to 60% of components, and requires a nacelle production facility in the country, by January 2016.

BNDES' Finame financing is considered essential for turbine manufacturers to offer equipment at competitive prices for developers in Brazil.