Lion's share seized

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Distribution of land in Tarifa for development of 200 MW of wind power has been awarded to Jose Illanes, a naturalised Dane born in Spain. Prospective developers of wind plant at Tarifa will apparently be required to apply to Illanes for rights to the windy land he is overseeing.

The agreement Illanes has reached with Tarifa mayor Jose Fuentes Pacheco is far from clear, though. Illanes was expected to come through with an ESP 500 million up front payment by June 18 as surety, deductible from future town hall tax on wind power earnings. Illanes commented in mid June that he was not in a position to say where the ESP 500 million was to come from. Fuentes Pacheco says he is banking on the money to pay his workers' June salaries.

Illanes describes himself as a "wind power promoter with several developments under his wing in India and Palm Springs." He claims a number of organisations are interested in investing in Tarifa, but could not confirm any names in June.

Until recently, he was the Spanish agent for Jacobs Energie GmbH, a German wind turbine manufacturer based in Heide. Jacobs, however, seems none too happy with Illanes' performance in Tarifa. The firm's Juergen Wriedt is dismayed that Illanes did not inform officials in Tarifa were of Jacobs' decision to pull out of a wind project, which included building a local factory. "We told him to report our decision to the mayor as soon as we changed plans. This will probably give us a very bad reputation in Spain," says Wriedt.

Back in October, Jacobs Energie informed the Tarifa authorities that it would build wind projects financed on the premise that ESP 1000/kW would be paid each year to the local community, a tax now being demanded of all wind development in Tarifa. Later Illanes said the company would set up a factory in the area which would employ a total of 100 people within five years.

Jacob Energie's decision to pull out of these plans is put down to a miscalculation by Illanes. "The problem with Jacobs is that they miscalculated the initial investment by a huge percentage. They had estimated investing ESP 85,000 per kilowatt, but when further research revealed they would have to increase that to ESP 135,000, they withdrew," he says

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