Clifford Chance provided legal counsel to the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) in the financing of a groundbreaking solar photovoltaic plant with a total capacity of 100 megawatts, slated for El Metbassta (Kairouan governorate), located 150 kilometers south of Tunis, Tunisia’s capital.
The venture is being developed by AMEA Power, a UAE-based renewable energy company experiencing rapid growth in the Middle East.
This landmark project represents Tunisia’s first large-scale privately financed solar endeavor and is among the country’s largest infrastructure public-private partnership projects in more than a decade.
Under the recently inked financing agreements, approximately $52 million, equivalent to 60.4% of the project’s estimated $86 million total cost, is being provided by lenders. Additionally, both the Clean Technology Fund, a program within the Climate Investment Funds (CIF), and the Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa (SEFA) are extending concessionary loans and funding of around $13 million each.
Tunisia is highly vulnerable to climate change, and its heavy reliance on imported hydrocarbons to satisfy growing energy demands has imperiled energy security and exposed the sector to price and exchange rate fluctuations.
This initiative is part of Tunisia’s forward-looking renewable energy program outlined in 2018, poised to reduce the cost of power generation, supply clean renewable energy to its 12 million citizens, curtail annual greenhouse gas emissions by nearly 100,000 tons, and expedite its transition to a sustainable future.
The Clifford Chance team was led in Paris by Partner Delphine Siino Courtin (pictured), with support from senior associate Mehdi Khemakhem and associate Maïlys Attiogbé.
The London office also advised on the construction aspects of this deal with Partner Edward Bretherton and associate Jonathan Forrest.