Brazilian utilities have awarded contracts to build and equip the 334-MW Simplicio hydroelectric project on Brazil’s Paraiba do Sul River.
Holding company Centrais Eletricas Brasileiras S/A (Eletrobras) issued a statement, reported by Business News Americas, saying Eletrobras and its utility unit, Furnas Centrais Eletricas, signed contracts with engineering firms Andrade Gutierrez and Odebrecht of Brazil to build Simplicio.
Eletrobras also signed a contract with Argentine equipment supplier Impsa to supply electrical equipment for the 1.2 billion real (US$554 million) project in Minas Gerais and Rio de Janeiro states.
Furnas won a 30-year build-operate concession for Simplicio in a government auction in December 2005. (HNN 8/24/06) The statement said Eletrobras is still negotiating with national development bank BNDES to finance construction.
Eletrobras also expects to start building the 52.2-MW Batalha project in January, with an investment of 381 million reais (US$176 million). The utility said it also has begun construction of 82-MW Retiro Baixo, on the Paraopeba River in Minas Gerais, at a cost of 276 million reais (US127 million).