Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Another addition to Jagdeo's long list of achievements getting closer to becoming a reality.

Work on the much-vaunted Amaila Falls Hydropower project could commence by mid-next year if an upcoming meeting with Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) officials to discuss financing for the project yields favourable results, President Bharrat Jagdeo announced yesterday.

Bharrat Jagdeo

Bharrat Jagdeo

Speaking at a press conference held at the International Conference Centre, Jagdeo said that this meeting was initiated after he had discussed funding for the long-awaited project with the President of the IDB while he was in Istanbul, Turkey. Jagdeo returned to the country on Sunday after attending the annual meeting of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank Group in that country. The upcoming meeting, which has been organized by the President of the IDB Luis Alberto Moreno, will be held early next month in Washington at the IDB. Jagdeo said that since the IDB may supply part of the financing for the project, the organization will play a critical role in organizing financing for it.

According to the President, before he left Guyana for Turkey he had met with the group responsible for the project. He said that the “there was a re-bid of certain portions” of the project which had gone out to tender last November and that the pricing is now in a range that is acceptable.
The President later disclosed that the price for the project would be about US$500 to US$600 million. The developer of the project is Synergy Holdings Inc. while Sithe Global Power is the leading financial group for the Amaila Falls Hydropower project in Region Seven (Cuyuni/Mazaruni).

The President noted that while the government is not financing the project, “GPL will be committing to a power purchase agreement”. He, however, said that “there may be a small loan, maybe in the magnitude of US$25 million to assist …with the building of the road and the cutting of the 100 km kilometres pathway for the running of the transmission main.”
Jagdeo stated that prior to the construction on the hydropower plant, work will be done to develop the access road to the site since this will advance the project schedule tremendously. Additionally, the government will be looking at establishing the transmission main along the coast. He stated that the transmission line is costing about US$100 million to bring the power down.

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