Neoen has completed the construction of its Altiplano 208 MW solar power plant in Argentina’s Salta region. The plant is Argentina’s second-largest solar project. Altiplano is expected to generate 650,000 MWh of solar-powered electricity every year, which is enough to power 215,000 households for a year. Under a 20-year power purchase agreement, the electricity produced will be supplied to national operator CAMMESA.
Proparco, DEG, ICCF, Société Générale, and KfW supplied financing for the plant, the latter two with a buyer’s credit guarantee from BPIAE in the form of non-recourse senior debt of $211 million. The solar park was created by combining the La Puna (107 MWp) and Altiplano (101 MWp) projects that Neoen was granted in the RenovAr 1 and RenovAr 2 competitive tenders, and is backed by a World Bank guarantee. A Franco-Spanish consortium led by GenSun and TSK built the plant under a turnkey contract, including significant French and Argentinian industrial content. Over 450 direct and indirect jobs were created as a result of the construction, the bulk of which was filled by people from the region’s indigenous communities.
In May 2021, Neoen announced its plans to commence the construction of the AUD373 million Kaban Green Power Hub in Far North Queensland, Australia. The energy hub would be designed to create clean, inexpensive energy while also strengthening the electricity network in Far North Queensland. The project consisted of a 157 MW wind farm located near the town of Ravenshoe in the Atherton Tablelands and the upgrade of the 320 km North Queensland coastal circuit transmission line from 132 kV to 275 kV.
REGlobal’s Views: South America, and especially Chile and Argentina, have emerged as attractive investment hotspots for large clean energy players over the globe. These countries have significant untapped solar and wind resources and give large players immense scale to expand their portfolios.