PARIS, FRANCE: EDF Energies Nouvelles (EDF EN) and the European Investment Bank (EIB) announced the signature of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to set up an innovative financing structure for a solar photovoltaic projects portfolio of EDF EN in France and Italy. The total amount allocated by the EIB stands at €500 million.
The investment programme covered by the agreement relates to the development by EDF EN of solar photovoltaic projects located in France and Italy over the 2010-2012 period. These projects, which are currently under development or under construction, will all be equipped with the thin-film photovoltaic technology created by the US company First Solar.
The financing framework agreement states that each project will be implemented jointly with several commercial banks, each financing allocation being independent of the others. The EIB’s contribution will represent up to 50 percent of the total financing of each project.
Two pilot projects, the Gabardan ground-based solar farm in France (three 12 MWp tranches, Landes) and the Loreo ground-based solar farm in Italy (12.5 MWp, Veneto) will be financed in early 2010 under this agreement. The financing structure to be implemented will then be replicated for each of the subsequent investments carried out under this programme. This mechanism will help to simplify the implementation of all the other projects as and when their construction starts.
Pâris Mouratoglou, Chairman of the Board of Directors of EDF Energies Nouvelles, said: “We are very happy with this innovative financing solution put together with the EIB that has been made possible by the volume of our projects’ portfolio.
“Perfectly suited to photovoltaic projects, which have a smaller average unit size than in wind energy, this financing structure will help EDF EN to step up the pace of completion of its numerous projects under development in France and Italy and will facilitate achievement of our ambitious objectives.”
“The support that we are providing to EDF Energies Nouvelles’ projects fits perfectly with the framework of the national and European policies in support of renewable energies and will help to meet the targets of combating global warming and promoting energy independence, while contributing to the development of innovative technologies”, said Philippe de Fontaine Vive, Vice-President of the European Investment Bank.
“We are convinced that R&D and investment in innovative and sustainable projects, in all strategic sectors including energy to stop climate change, are essential to economic revival and growth in our countries.”