British utility expanding into Peruvian hydropower market

Rurelec PLC is expanding into Peru’s hydroelectric market, the British electric utility company announced in a release.

Rurelec already owns and operates power generation capacity in Latin America, but the company has agreed to serve as primary investor in a deal that will acquire a 50% interest in Cascade Hydro Limited.

Financial details of the deal were not disclosed.

Cascade, also based in England, is a newly formed hydropower company focused on run-of-river projects.

Rurelec has already secured options for more than 32 MW of prospective developments, beginning with the 4-MW, US$8 million Canchayllo project located in the Junin Province east of Lima. The project is expected to take about 18 months to develop once financing is received and enter commercial operation in 2013.

Rurelec CEO Peter Earl said Cascade is the first step toward replacing the company’s 538 MW of installed capacity in Peru that was lost when the Peruvian government seized Rurelec’s controlling stake in Empresa Electrica Guaracachi SA in May 2010.

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