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Azito Proparco
PROPARCO has signed today a EUR 30m loan to Azito Energie S.A. This financing will provide an effective response to Côte d’Ivoire’s growing electricity needs via the expansion of the Azito power plant. The project confirms AFD Group’s continued support to Côte d’Ivoire’s power sector and is part of a broader approach to assist the country’s energy transition.

Improved access to electricity for 6 millions Ivorians

Only 65% of the Ivorian population currently has access to electricity and the electrification rate is under 40% in rural areas. Domestic electricity demand, driven by the ambitious programs launched by the authorities to increase access to electricity and by the economic growth experienced by the country, is expected to increase by about 5% a year or even more by 2025, creating a generation deficit.

The expansion of the capacity of the Azito combined cycle gas turbine power plant, which is connected to the domestic grid, will increase the power generation capacity and will thereby contribute to providing an effective response to the needs of West Africa’s leading economy. It is currently the country’s best alternative to address its growing electricity demand.

The additional 253 MW will increase the power plant’s total capacity to 710 MW. Azito should thereby supply about 30% of domestic electric power starting in 2021, the planned commissioning date for the Azito 4 expansion.

By supplying some 2,000 GWh of additional electricity every year, this project should improve access to electricity for over 6 million people. The additional energy will meet growing demand, in particular from rural areas, thanks to grid extension projects which are currently under development.

It will also reduce the problems of quality and reliability of supply experienced by the country (about 16 hours of cut-offs on average per year). Finally, the expansion will benefit from a less energy-intensive technology, about 50% more efficient compared to an open cycle power plant with the same capacity, which will make it the most efficient in the country and will limit the use of inefficient power plants.

Finally, in addition to improving access to electricity, this project will create or maintain over 125,000 jobs (direct and indirect) and will provide Côte d’Ivoire with EUR 11m of annual tax revenues.  

A project supported by a consortium of partners  

The project will be financed via shareholders’ equity and debt provided by development finance institutions, such as the African Development Bank (AfDB), West African Development Bank (BOAD), OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID), International Finance Corporation (IFC), PROPARCO and its Dutch (FMO), Belgian (BIO) and German (DEG) counterparts and the Emerging Africa Infrastructure Fund (EAIF), which is a PIDG company.

The project will be developed by two major players in the energy sector in Africa who are key partners for AFD Group: Globeleq, one of the leading independent power producers in Africa, and IPS West Africa, one of Aga Khan’s investment vehicles in Africa.

Also supporting the country’s low-carbon transition

Beyond this project, AFD Group, IFC, BIO, FMO, DEG and EAIF are actively supporting Côte d’Ivoire’s energy and low-carbon transition. The support of development finance institutions is demonstrated by a strong political dialogue aiming at continuing to develop solutions and investments in the field of renewable energies, which will benefit from their financial support.

AFD Group is committed to the development of the power sector in Côte d’Ivoire, by supporting programs for access to electricity, with a focus on rural areas, and by assisting Côte d’Ivoire in its energy transition.

In November 2018, the Ivorian Ministry of Petroleum, Energy and Renewable Energies and AFD thereby committed to strengthening their cooperation to develop the energy sector in Côte d’Ivoire. The commitments were recalled when the financing for the Azito power plant was realized, in particular Côte d’Ivoire’s energy ambition set out in its Nationally Determined Contribution, which targets an energy mix with 42% of renewable energies, and the accelerated implementation of the first solar and biomass projects by 2020. The joint declaration of November 2018 also provides for an action plan to be included in its program to compensate for the intermittency of solar energy and a climate approach to link the scenarios for the development of the energy mix and the related greenhouse gas emissions. Finally, the commitments include the preparation, with donors, of an ambitious program to develop the share of REN in the Ivorian energy mix.

AFD Group is currently mobilizing all its financial instruments and studies to support a faster deployment of renewable energy solutions of the future. AFD is contributing to speeding up the achievement of the objective of a capacity of 150 MW of solar energy planned by the end of 2020, by improving the capacity of the power grid to integrate renewable energies and considering financing Africa’s first floating solar power plant.

AFD is also financing a study on vulnerability to the impacts of climate change and the optimization of hydropower potential on the rivers Bandama and Sassandra.

In addition, AFD Group is actively supporting the emergence of a bioelectricity sector with the first Biovéa pilot project, which should be the continent’s first biomass power plant connected to the grid. This project – which is currently under study – should provide socioeconomic benefits and offer a demonstrable replication potential.

Finally, AFD Group is going to assist Côte d’Ivoire with the definition of its low-carbon strategy by developing a modelling tool for the energy sector and the related greenhouse gas emissions, as well as with the adaptation component of its climate roadmap (updating of its Nationally Determined Contribution).