WONTHAGGI PROJECT FINANCING CLOSE
- From: Vol 10, Issue 8 (August 2009)
- Category: Need to know
- Region: Unspecified
- Related Companies: Befesa, Macquarie, Marafiq, Suez Environment and Thiess
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The consortium of Suez Environnement, Thiess and Macquarie Capital won the race for Wonthaggi – Australia’s first desalination BOT – at the end of July, and is looking to close the A$4.5 billion (US$4 billion) financing by 4th September.
* It is a monstrous amount of money – the biggest desal financing in the world by a large margin. The previous record was $2.9 billion for the 800,000m3/d Marafiq Jubail project – but for that amount you get nearly twice as much water, and a 2,500MW power station thrown in for free.
* Just as Saudi Arabia steps back from the independent water and power project model (see GWI July 2009 p18), Kuwait seems to be moving towards it. It is looking for an advisor
* Along the Gulf coast in Bahrain, the Ad Dur IWPP appears to be making progress towards financial close, with a very short eight-year $1.7 billion debt package. Shuweihat 2 in Abu Dhabi continues to struggle to find $2.2 billion over a 22-year tenor. It may yet end up a government-financed project.
* Over in China, Befesa has closed the $192 million financing of its 100,000m3/d project in Qingdao. It is the first municipal desal project in China to be financed through debt provided entirely by local banks. The project was originally awarded in 2005, but took three and a half years to reach financial close. The Spanish developer hopes that now that the model has been established, other projects will follow in quick succession.