Ecuador awards concession for 1,500-MW Coca Codo Sinclair

The head of Ecuador power regulator Consejo Nacional de Electrificacion (Conelec) signed a certificate of concession April 3 for the 1,500-MW Coca Codo Sinclair hydroelectric project on the Coca River in Ecuador’s Napo Province.

Conelec Executive Director Fernando Izquierdo awarded the concession to Compania de Generacion Termoelectrica Pinchincha S.A. (Termopichincha) of Ecuador. The concession guarantees Termopichincha exclusive right to carry out the project.

Termopichincha applied for the concession in January, submitting documentation including a feasibility study, a preliminary study of environmental effects, and a request for a water concession. Once Conelec staff determined the documents fulfilled statutory requirements, the application was presented to the Conelec board.

The concession grants Termopichincha 12 months to meet and fulfill necessary requirements so that that concession agreement is formalized.

The government previously said Coca Codo Sinclair’s ten 150-MW turbine-generators are to begin operation in 2012, generating power at a cost of 2 cents per kWh.

Ecuador President Rafael Correa and energy officials of Ecuador and Argentina recently ratified an agreement for joint development of Coca Codo Sinclair. (HNN 2/11/08) The governments agreed that the project is to be carried out by Coca Codo Sinclair S.A., a joint venture of Termopichincha and Energia Argentina S.A. (Enarsa) of Argentina.

Under that agreement, Ecuador is to finance 70 percent of the US$1.6 billion project, with Argentina providing the remaining 30 percent. Correa’s office said Coca Codo Sinclair S.A. is founded with seed capital of US$400,000, of which US$280,000 will come from Termopichincha and US$120,000 will come from Enarsa.

Ecuador’s energy and hydrocarbon investment fund, Fondo Ecuatoriano de Inversion en los Sectores Energetico e Hidrocarburifero (FEISEH), is to provide Ecuador’s share of the funding. (HNN 4/3/08) Money for FEISEH come from the sale of oil from fields the government confiscated from Occidental Petroleum Co. in 2006.


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