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China and Japan Driving Renewable Investment in Africa

Africamoney

Chinese power companies and Japanese trading houses are emerging as major financiers of African renewable energy projects, which saw investment quadruple to $9.3 billion last year, Baker & McKenzie LLP said.

“Asian investors are increasingly targeting African renewable energy projects,” attracted by better returns and strong wind and solar resources on the continent, the Chicago-based law firm said in report today based on a global survey of 140 industry executives. Recent deals include the 20-billion-yen ($205 million) Dorper wind farm in South Africa that sold a 60% stake to Sumitomo Corp. (8053) and was partially debt financed by Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp., it said. The Export-Import Bank of China also provided $315 million of loans for a 360MW hydropower station in Zambia, according to the report.

Last year, Asia-Pacific companies and investors announced $6 billion of acquisitions of renewable energy assets outside of their region, compared with $1.9 billion in 2011, according to the report.

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