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Nam Theun 1 achieves financial closure

Financing was closed on 12 March on the 670 MW Nam Theun 1 storage hydro project in central Laos.

The Nam Theun 1 Power Company (NT1PC), a joint venture between Thailand’s Electricity Generating Public Company (EGCO), Laos’ Phonesack Group and the country’s state power producer, EDL Generation, closed financing on 12 March on the US$ 1 billion, 670 MW Nam Theun 1 storage hydropower project in central Laos. Financing was provided by Bangkok Bank, Export-Import Bank of Thailand, Siam Commercial Bank and TISCO Bank.

The lenders were advised by Clifford Chance and Thai law firm Chandler MHM, while the project sponsors were advised by Allen & Overy. DFDL advised the sponsors as Laos counsel. EGCO announced in December that it had signed a financing agreement for the project for US$ 934.5 million with undisclosed commercial banks.

EGCO, Thailand’s second-largest private power producer, holds a 25 per cent stake in NT1PC, as per a shareholders’ agreement signed in September 2017. Phonesack Group holds a 60 per cent stake in the joint venture while EDL holds the remaining 15 per cent. In September 2017, the project owners secured 27-year power purchase agreements with the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) and Electricité du Laos (EDL) for 514.3 MW and 130 MW of capacity, respectively.

The plant, which is being built on the river Nam Kading, about 33 km upstream from its confluence with the Mekong, in the province of Bolikhamxai, is scheduled to begin operation in 2022. It will be the last plant in the Nam Theun-Nam Kading Hydropower Cascade, which also comprises the existing upstream hydropower plants of Theun Hinboun, Theun Hinboun Expansion and Nam Theun II.

The plant is scheduled to begin operation in 2022. It will be the last plant in the Nam Theun-Nam Kading hydropower cascade.

A joint venture of Italy’s Cooperativa Muratori e Cementisti (CMC) di Ravenna and Vietnam’s Song Da Corporation is carrying out the civil works including construction of a 177 m-high gravity RCC dam, which will impound a reservoir with a storage capacity of 2.772 ¥ 109 m3. Andritz Hydro is supplying and overseeing installation of the project’s electro-mechanical equipment, including three vertical Francis turbines, generators, governors, automation and control systems. Pöyry was contracted in March 2017 to provide owner’s engineering services for the project.

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