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- OPEC Fund supports clean energy development in Azerbaijan with US$50 million loan to ACWA Power
OPEC Fund supports clean energy development in Azerbaijan with US$50 million loan to ACWA Power
October 27, 2023: The OPEC Fund for International Development (the OPEC Fund) is providing a US$50 million loan to ACWA Power to support the 240 MW Khizi-Absheron wind power project in Azerbaijan, which will strengthen the country’s electricity supply, diversify its energy-mix and reduce carbon emissions. This will be the first utility-scale wind power project in the country and the largest in the Caucasus region.
The US$345 million project includes the development of wind farms in Absheron (102 MW) and Khizi (138 MW), two regions in eastern Azerbaijan. It is the first time an independent wind power project in the country is financed by foreign investment and structured as a private-public partnership (PPP). The OPEC Fund is joined in financing the project by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).
OPEC Fund Director-General Abdulhamid Alkhalifa said: “The OPEC Fund is proud to be a key partner in the Khizi-Absheron Wind Power Project, which will mark a shift in Azerbaijan’s energy landscape by promoting foreign investment and private sector financing for a public-private partnership renewable project. Through our support we aim to catalyze clean energy generation and a diversified energy future for Azerbaijan. The agreement is also testament to what international development cooperation can achieve.”
Upon completion the Khizi-Absheron wind power plants are expected to generate approximately 3.7 percent of Azerbaijan’s current energy production, supplying 300,000 households, saving up to 220 million cubic meters of gas annually and offsetting 400,000 tons of emissions.
Azerbaijan aims to generate 30 percent of its energy from renewable sources by 2050, doubling its current level, in order to reduce emissions by 40 per cent.
Headquartered in Saudi Arabia, ACWA Power is a leading international developer and operator of power generation and water desalination facilities. The OPEC Fund and ACWA Power have previously cooperated on energy projects in Jordan (Zarga), Egypt (Kom Ombo) and Uzbekistan (Sidarya, Dzhankeldy and Bash wind farms).
The OPEC Fund has committed to increase its climate financing to 40 percent of all new investments by 2030 according to its Climate Action Plan adopted in September 2022.
About the OPEC Fund
The OPEC Fund for International Development (the OPEC Fund) is the only globally mandated development institution that provides financing from member countries to non-member countries exclusively. The organization works in cooperation with developing country partners and the international development community to stimulate economic growth and social progress in low- and middle-income countries around the world. The OPEC Fund was established in 1976 with a distinct purpose: to drive development, strengthen communities and empower people. Our work is people-centered, focusing on financing projects that meet essential needs, such as food, energy, infrastructure, employment (particularly relating to MSMEs), clean water and sanitation, healthcare and education. To date, the OPEC Fund has committed more than US$24 billion to development projects in over 125 countries with an estimated total project cost of US$190 billion. The OPEC Fund is rated AA+/Outlook Stable by Fitch and AA, Outlook Positive by S&P. Our vision is a world where sustainable development is a reality for all.