20 banks support Taiwan offshore wind farm, financial close around the corner
The Zhong Neng offshore wind project, a joint venture between Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP) and China Steel Corporation (CSC), has signed a project finance agreement with 20 banks and is expected to close its financing soon, CIP said.
The 298 MW project is located next to CIP’s Changfang and Xidao offshore wind farm, which is currently under construction.
Zhong Neng received approval for its local content plan in November 2019 by the government of Taiwan and is Taiwan’s most localized offshore wind project to date, according to CIP.
The wind farm will use jacketed foundations that will be supplied by CSC’s subsidiary, Sing Da Marine Structures, and Vestas will supply 31 of its 174 to 9.6 MW turbines.
“CIP is very pleased to have reached this important milestone of the project in close collaboration and partnership with our joint venture partner, CSC”,‘ noted Michel annibal, Partner of CIP.
“We are delighted to soon enter the construction phase of Zhong Neng which, once commercial operation begins, will provide clean energy to approximately 300,000 homes in Taiwan. Since CIP and its international grid companies entered the Taiwan offshore wind market in 2017, we have been working intensively with Taiwanese companies and the government to develop the local supply chain, and therefore we are proud to deliver the project. with the highest degree of localization in Taiwan to date with CSC.
The wind farm project will be financed by a combination of equity from the CIP CI IV and CSC funds and loans from a consortium of 20 banks. A total of around $ 1.6 billion in project funding has been raised through a successful process, CIP said.
CI IV is 49 percent shareholder of Zhong Neng, with the remaining 51 percent held by CSC.
The two developers worked together to secure a grid allocation for Zhong Neng in 2018 and to enter into a 20-year power purchase agreement with state-owned Taiwan Power Company in 2019. CSC and CIP will jointly lead the project throughout its construction phase. start of commercial operations in 2025.
“Since CSC and CIP initiated the discussion regarding a joint venture for Zhong Neng in 2017, the partnership between CSC and CIP has been very successful, with both parties adding significant value to the project. CIP looks forward to continuing this value-creating partnership for Taiwanese society, the local community and our investors ”, Hannibal said.
Copenhagen Offshore Partners will continue to be involved throughout the construction of the project.
MUFG and CTBC acted as joint financial advisers for the debt financing of the project. White & Case acted as legal counsel and Baker McKenzie as local legal counsel.