A project to build 65MW of solar power generation in Uruguay has successfully reached financial close.
Spanish solar operations and management firm, Fotowatio Renewable Ventures (FRV) has signed for US$70 million in funds from Norway’s largest bank, DNB Group.
Spanish bank, Santander is to provide additional finance of US$24 million.
FRV is to construct the project with international infrastructure developer, OHL Group, with the project scheduled for completion by May 2015. Chinese electric manufacturer, BYD is to supply the solar panels, which will power 35,000 local homes a year.
The site is to be constructed in the Salto Department, in the north west of Uruguay.
The first 50MW of the project, ‘La Jacinta’ also marks the first ever solar Power Purchase Agreement to be signed in Uruguay.
The 30-year PPA is between Uruguayan state-owned utility UTE (National Administration of Electricity Plants and Transmission) and FRV.
FRV was chosen in August 2013 by UTE to oversee the 65MW solar power plant’s development as part of the second round of its 200MW large-scale tender programme, which opened on 27 May this year. The second round of bidding will expire on 2 September.
Administracion Nacional de Usinas y Transmisiones Electricas will buy electricity from Fotowatio RV at a price of US$91.50 per MWh, which is among the lowest rates in solar power globally, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance.
The government has earmarked US$400 million of support for the projects.
Uruguay's national target is to produce 90% of all energy consumed from renewable energy sources by 2015.