Ecuador province seeks partner for 190-MW Toachi-Pilaton

Hidrotoapi S.A., a company owned by Ecuador’s Pichincha Province, plans to recruit a strategic partner to help develop the 190-MW Toachi-Pilaton hydroelectric complex, 40 kilometers from Quito on the Toachi and Pilaton rivers in Pichincha.

Hidrotoapi received a development concession in December from Ecuador regulator Consejo Nacional de Electricidad (Conelec) and holds a US$170 million line of credit from Brazilian development bank BNDES.

The developer seeks a partner to build, finance, and operate the estimated US$275 million project, which is to include the 50-MW Sarapullo and 140-MW Alluriquin hydropower plants.

It plans to select a partner through a “Swiss Challenge” bidding process in which the winning bidder must present a better offer than the first proposal. Solicitation terms are to be available in July.

A previous concession was awarded in 1998 to a consortium led by Kvaerner Energy a.s of Norway. However, the developer was unable to reach financial close and returned the concession in 2002 to local governing unit Consejo Provincial de Pichincha. A subsequent solicitation drew only one bid, from Impsa of Argentina, prompting Conelec instead to award the project to province-owned Hidrotoapi.

For information, contact General Manager Byron Granda, Hidrotoapi S.A.; Tel/Fax: (593) 2-2907522; E-mail: hidrotoapi@pichincha.gov.ec, bgranda@pichincha.gov.ec; Internet: www.pichincha.gov.ec.

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