West Africa's largest wind project overcomes latest hurdle

AFRICA: Senegal's first wind power plant, and the biggest by far in West Africa, is moving closer to reality at Taïba Ndiaye, on the coast 75 kilometers north-east of Dakar.

An artists rendering of the 125MW wind farm planned for Taïba Ndiaye
An artists rendering of the 125MW wind farm planned for Taïba Ndiaye

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The 125MW project, being developed by French company Sarreole, has now received all the necessary permits. Sarreole hopes to have a long-term power purchase agreement with national utility Senelec in place by the summer.

In the meantime, it is negotiating a turbine supply agreement with Nordex for 50 2.5MW turbines and holding talks with various development banks with the help of Chapin International, a project finance and investment banking advisory company.

According to Chapin's Eric McCartney, it is envisaged that the estimated €230 million project cost will be financed by a combination of development bank financing and export credits, with 70% debt and 30% equity.

McCartney anticipates financial closure could take place in September. When completed, the plant will represent approximately 15% of Senegal's current generation capacity.


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