Portugal

Portugal

Another huge investment plan

Energías de Portugal (EDP), having entered the US power market this year with its acquisition of Horizon Wind Energy, is now aiming to expand its global presence further as part of a strategy to increase its installed wind capacity from 2732 MW by the end of September to 7600 MW by end 2010.

Under a EUR 6.2 billion spending plan, Portugal's publicly listed national utility has earmarked eastern Europe, the UK, Mexico, Canada, Morocco and Italy as potential targets for development. "We are studying regions where there is enough wind and capacity in order to implement projects rapidly," says the company's António Mexia.

EDP's wind business has been buoyed significantly by the Horizon acquisition. The American subsidiary's activities were included for the first time in EDP's company results, published last month for the first nine months of 2007. Power generated from EDP's wind plant in the period was up 70% on the same period last year, while installed capacity has risen 121% to 2732 MW. Horizon contributed some 941 MW to the total in the three months to the end of September alone.

The rest of EDP's capacity is in Europe, increasing to 1791 MW by the end of the third quarter -- representing a 50% increase year-on-year, "in line with the announced goals," it says. Generation from its European capacity was up 58% to 2153 GWh, with capacity factors averaging 26%. The US plant registered an average capacity factor of 37%.

EDP is still considering a stock exchange listing of its renewable energy subsidiary, Novas Energias do Ocidente (NEO), says Mexia. He is keeping a close eye on Iberdrola's flotation of its renewables unit this month, before making a decision about following suit with NEO sometime next year. The Iberdrola case will serve as a "test to follow," he says.

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