African development bank backing for Namibia project

The Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) has agreed a funding facility to progress the development of a ‘transformational’ green hydrogen project in Namibia by Hyphen Hydrogen Energy.

Hydrogen Energy chief executive Marco Raffinetti said the funding demonstrates DBSA’s belief in the Hyphen project (image credit: Hydrogen Energy)

The project preparation facility from the DBSA will partially fund engineering, environmental and socioeconomic development work streams to develop the project up to a final investment decision.

With an estimated capital investment of $10 billion (€9.3bn), Hyphen’s project is roughly equivalent to Namibia’s annual gross domestic product, the company said. 

Hyphen is a joint venture between Nicholas Holdings Limited, a strategic investment and infrastructure project developer and operator, and Enertrag SE, which has more than 10GW of wind, solar and green hydrogen projects under development in ten countries across the globe.

The project is the first step in Namibia’s strategy to develop a major green hydrogen industry. 

At full scale development, due by the end of the decade, the project will produce 2 million tonnes per year of green ammonia from 7GW of renewable generation capacity and 3GW of electrolyser capacity. The hydrogen will be supplied to regional and global markets.

The DBSA is a government-owned development finance institution with a mandate to promote economic growth and regional integration for sustainable development projects and programmes in South Africa and the wider sub-Saharan region.

Marco Raffinetti, chief executive of Hydrogen Energy, said: “The finalisation of this funding commitment demonstrates the belief of DBSA in the Hyphen project. We look forward to walking the journey with DBSA to financial close, where we hope that both these organisations will be significant providers of debt funding to the project.” 

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