The Australia-Asia PowerLink proposes to build up to 20GW of solar near Elliott in the heart of the Northern Territory, and 42GWh of battery storage, providing clean energy for new Darwin green industry and to Singapore through a 4,200km sub-sea cable.
Macquarie and Moelis will advise Sun Cable to help structure, arrange and execute what will be one of the biggest capital raisings ever seen in Australia, particularly from a green fields project for a newly created company,
Sun Cable has been backed until now by the country’s two richest men – iron ore magnate Andrew Forrest and tech billionaire Mike Cannon-Brookes – but it is not clear how much much of their deep pockets will be used to advance the project to the construction state.
Sun Cable wants to begin construction in 2024, complete financial close by the start of 2024, start supplying 800MW of electricity capacity to Darwin in 2027, and to be in full operation – helping to power Singapore – by 2029.
“The Australia-Asia PowerLink is a long term investment in energy resilience and decarbonisation, at scale,” Sun Cable founder and CEO David Griffin said in a statement.
Sun Cable is unlikely to stop at a single project. The sheer scale of the task will create massive manufacturing opportunities in Australia and overseas, and help reshape global supply chains.
The expertise built up by in the enormous complexity of the project will likely be used to replicate the idea elsewhere – drawing on regions with an abundance of wind and solar to supply major demand and load centres.
“The AAPPowerLink project is the first of its kind and the first of many,” the company says, as we reported last year.
Sun Cable Group Chief Financial Officer Kiran Raj said: “The Australia-Asia PowerLink is led by a highly capable, experienced and expert team focussed on delivering proven technology and engineering in a form that is investable, de-risked, and certain,” Sun Cable Group CFO Kiran Raj said in a statement.
Sun Cable has already formed a delivery team that includes Bechtel (Project Delivery), SMEC (Solar Generation System), Surbana Jurong Group, Hatch (HVDC Transmission), Marsh (Risk Management), PwC Australia (Project Advisory) to provide the technical advice for the project.
Last month, it was given a further boost by Infrastructure Australia which affirmed the economic merit of Sun Cable’s Australia-Asia PowerLink project, which could help it access funding from the likes of the Clean Energy Finance Corp and the Northern Australian Infrastructure Fund.