AfDB Approves $500m For Morocco Solar Power Project

Ouarzazate Solar Complex Project

VENTURES AFRICA – The Board of Directors of the African Development Bank Group has approved $436 million for the financing of Morocco’s power project, and two other investments in Africa.

The board approved a 168 million euros ($213.6 million) and $100 million Clean Technology Fund concessionary loan to finance the first phase of the Ouarzazate solar power station in Morocco. The power station is designed to pioneer the development of concentrated solar power technology in the country, beginning with the 1st phase of the Ouarzazate complex.

Estimated at Euro 1.042 billion, the project will be jointly financed by six other agencies including the World Bank, European Investment Bank, Agence Française de développement, German Development Bank (KfW), Neighbourhood Investment Facility, and some Moroccan institutions.

The Ouarzazate Solar Complex Project has a capacity of 500 MW and an estimated output of 1150 GWH/year (if thermo-solar technology is used), the project is the first of a series of 5 solar complexes that will have a combined capacity of 2,000 MW by 2020.

The AfDb also approved $100-million equity investment in Agvance Africa, a private equity Fund of Funds (FoF) initiated by UNIDO, FAO, UNECA, IFAD, and ADB, with the objective of promoting agro-industries, and agri-business in Africa. The grant would see Agvance provide funding to private equity and Mezzanine Debt funds as well as co-finance selected investments for private companies.

According to the AfDB, Agvance Africa Fund of Funds will be managed by Credit Suisse. It has a $500 million capital size with a first closing expected to raise $250 million.

Finally, the ADF Board approved a $14-million grant for capacity building on managing for development results in the Regional Member Countries (RMCs) and the Regional Economic Communities (RECs).

The grant will support the African community of practice for managing for Development Results (AfCoP) to mainstream results-based practices of Managing for Development Results (MfDR) into the policies and strategies of Regional Member Countries. The project is demand-driven with direct beneficiaries in the Common Market for East and Southern Africa (COMESA) and West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) and their member states.