Award-winning €78m Akuo Kita solar power plant in Mali
The €78 million Akuo Kita solar power station project in Mali began supplying electricity to EDF, Mali’s energy utility, in early 2020. It is EAIF’s first renewable energy project in Mali. Developing a dependable electricity supply is fundamental to building stronger economies, especially in fragile countries like Mali, where 36% of people live below the poverty line.
Built, owned and managed by the French company, Akuo Energy, the 50MW plant is one of the largest solar facilities in West Africa. It has the capacity to supply electricity to the equivalent of around 91,000 homes.
IJGlobal, the world-wide infrastructure market intelligence organisation, awarded the financing of the project its 2018 African Solar Deal of the Year accolade.
The project reached financial close in October 2018. EAIF was the joint Mandated Lead Arranger of the debt financing. The senior debt facility is for a total of €54 million over 17 years. EAIF’s share of the debt package is €18 million and it provided an additional €8 million mezzanine facility over 20 years. Another PIDG company, GuarantCo, provided a €2.3 million Debt Service Reserve Account guarantee.
Up to 400 people, including 20 managers, were employed during the plant’s 14-month construction period. Some 30 permanent staff, all of whom are from Mali, will manage and maintain the plant.