A consortium comprising the U.K.’s Gridworks, Spain’s AEE Power and France’s Eranove will invest US$100M in the development of three off-grid solar plants in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), following the establishment of three, 22-year concession agreements with the Ministry of Hydraulic Resources and Electricity.
Located in the northern cities of Gemena, Bumba and Isiro, the three solar-hybrid plants will deliver electricity to areas that previously lacked connection to the national grid.
The projects are expected to reach financial close within 14 months. Construction will be led by the Moyi Power joint venture and completed within 18 months of its start.
The international consortium was awarded the tender for the project under the U.K. government-funded Essor Access to Energy initiative, which serves to facilitate the DRC’s tender and project preparation process for the development of mini-grid and off-grid systems.
“The initial investment for the three sites will be at least US$100M, funded with a mixture of equity from the consortium, debt provided by development finance institutions (DFIs) and capital grants from donors and DFIs,” Gridworks, a U.K state-owned electricity network company, explained in a statement.
“The consortium is in discussions for the provision of debt finance with both the Emerging Africa Infrastructure Fund and the African Development Bank (AfDB), and for the potential provision of grants with the Private Infrastructure Development Group, the Rockefeller Foundation and the AfDB’s Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa.”