Ugandan President Museveni and Aga Khan Inaugurate Bujagali Hydropower Plant
Established through a unique public-private partnership, the project will
drive economic growth and provide clean, reliable power for Ugandans
*Completion of project showcases successful public-private partnership for
infrastructure development, bringing together the Government of Uganda,
Industrial Promotion Services (IPS - the infrastructure and industrial
development arm of the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development) and
Blackstone Portfolio Company, Sithe Global
*The 250MW hydropower plant has nearly doubled Uganda’s electricity supply
and virtually eliminated power shortages and blackouts
*The total project cost is approximately $900 million
JINJA, Uganda -- October 08, 2012
Uganda’s President, Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, today inaugurated the 250MW
Bujagali Hydropower Plant in the presence of the Aga Khan and project partners
Sithe Global, a company majority owned by a fund managed by Blackstone on
behalf of its investors. The ceremony, which took place on the eve of
celebrations marking 50 years of Uganda’s independence, was attended by
government officials, heads of State from across Africa, international
dignitaries and members of the diplomatic community.
The plant, constructed at a cost of approximately US$900 million, was jointly
funded by Industrial Promotion Services (IPS), the infrastructure and
industrial development arm of the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development,
Sithe Global Power LLC (USA), a company majority owned by Blackstone Capital
Partners IV, L.P., a fund managed by Blackstone on behalf of its investors,
and the Government of Uganda. It has eliminated Uganda’s previous energy
shortage by nearly doubling the country’s effective generation capacity (it
currently meets 49% of the country’s energy requirements) and provides clean,
reliable power at lower costs than existing power generating facilities.
Construction of the plant commenced in August 2007. It comprises five units of
50MW each, commissioned in phases between February 2012 and June 2012.
Bujagali represents one of the largest privately-funded power sector
investments ever made in Sub-Saharan Africa and sets a unique precedent for
public-private partnerships. The plant will be operated by Bujagali Energy
Limited (BEL), a company established by the project partners to operate and
manage the plant, for a 30 year period, following which it will be transferred
to the government of Uganda for a nominal price of US one dollar.
Uganda’s electricity demand has been growing by 10% every year, while supply
prior to the commissioning of Bujagali has remained stagnant. Frequent power
shortages and blackouts accounted for between 1 to 1.5% loss to Uganda’s GDP,
thereby slowing the country’s economic development. Since the first unit
became operational in February 2012, Bujagali has provided a reliable solution
to Uganda’s power demands, serving as a catalyst for economic growth and
replacing emergency thermal generation costs, thereby saving US$ 9.5 million
per month in government subsidies.
Commenting on the role of the Aga Khan Development Network, His Highness the
Aga Khan, said, “But let me emphasize that this has also been a global story.
As we try to count up the key participants, we find that they come from at
least 37 different countries - a truly international network of partners.
Those of us who represent the Aga Khan Development Network are proud to have
been associated with so many fine allies in this work, including our close,
central partnership with Sithe Global and Blackstone.”
The project serves as an example of a highly successful public-private
partnership model, ideal for replication throughout the region.
Speaking at the event, David Foley, Senior Managing Director and Chief
Executive Officer of Blackstone Energy Partners, said, “Bujagali showcases how
successful partnerships between the public and private sectors can create
development opportunities for growing economies. Blackstone is proud to
haveplayed an important role, together with our partner the Aga Khan, inthe
development of Bujagali,thesuccessful completionof whichis acredit to the
leadershipofPresident Museveni and the commitment of the Government of
Uganda. Africa is a resource rich continent and is primed for the development
of hydroelectric power generation facilities like Bujagali. On behalf of our
investors, Blackstone has committed billions of dollars of equity capital to
build energy businesses on four continents around the globe and will continue
to invest in emerging market countries to provide them with the affordable,
safe and reliable energy to sustain their economic growth.”
The Bujagali Hydropower Project has already impacted the surrounding
communities with the creation of approximately 3,000 new jobs for Ugandan
workers during peak construction; improved community services such as clean
water supply, education and health facilities in nearby villages; the
provision of micro-credit funds to surrounding rural populations and the
enhancement of infrastructure.
“That a project of Bujagali’s size and complexity has been completed on time
and within budget whilst adhering to the highest technical as well as social
and environmental standards is a huge testimony to the quality and experience
of the sponsor, development and construction teams, with whom I am truly proud
to be associated. The Bujagali experience is invaluable and we will certainly
draw from it when developing future projects in the region,” observed Mr.
Nizar Juma, the Chairman of Bujagali Energy Ltd.
Bruce J. Wrobel, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Sithe Global who was
also present at the commissioning said, “We believe that projects like
Bujagali, which has both impacted the energy sector in Uganda in a
far-reaching positive way and mitigated the ecological footprint of a
generation, is the key to sustainable development. We are proud to have joined
our partners, the lenders and the Government of Uganda in bringing this
project to a reality and it is gratifying to see the impacts the project is
already having, not only by making available ample, clean, renewable energy,
but also by having a positive effect on the lives of the people living in the
community and region around this project.”
The Project has also been registered as a Clean Development Mechanism (CDM),
making it the largest project ever registered in a Least Developed Country.
Bujagali will yield an average of 900,000 Carbon Dioxide Emission Reductions
(CERs) annually, putting it at the forefront of clean energy efforts.
The project was also made possible by support from a number of other lenders:
International Finance Corporation (“IFC”), the European Investment Bank,
African Development Bank (“AfDB”), Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor
Ontwikkelinsslanden N.V. (“FMO”), Societe de Promotion et de Participation
pour la Cooperation Economique (“Proparco”)/Agence Francaise de Development
(“AFD”), DEG-Deutsche Investitions-und Entwicklungsgesellschaft MBH (“DEG”)
and KfW. Barclays/ABSA Capital and Standard Chartered Bank are providing
commercial debt under an International Development Association (“IDA”) Partial
Risk Guarantee, while MIGA is providing insurance guarantee cover for Sithe
BUJAGALI HYDROPOWER PLANT
Bujagali Hydropower Project was established through a public-private
partnership model between the Government of Uganda on the one hand and a
consortium of the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development and Blackstone
affiliates on the other.
This consortium partnered with the Government of Uganda to form Bujagali
Energy Limited (BEL). BEL will own and operate Bujagali Hydropower plant for a
30-year concession period before transferring the plant to the Government of
Uganda for US$1.
Please see: www.bujagali-energy.com
Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development (AKFED)
AKFED is an international development agency of the Aga Khan Development
Network, dedicated to promoting entrepreneurship and building economically
sound enterprises in the developing world. AKFED focuses on building
enterprises in parts of the world that lack sufficient foreign direct
investment. It also makes bold but calculated investments in situations that
are fragile and complex.
Industrial Promotion Services (IPS)
IPS is the infrastructure and industrial development arm of AKFED. It has
operations in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and DR Congo which employ some 8,500
people, and is also actively pursuing investment opportunities in Rwanda,
Mozambique and Madagascar. Outside the East and Central Africa region, IPS
also operates in Cote d’Ivoire, Burkina Faso, Mali, Senegal, Tajikistan,
Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan and Canada.
IPS’s involvement in power includes the 288 MW Azito gas power plant in Cote
D’Ivoire, concessionaire for Energie du Mali (power & water utility), Kenya’s
75 MW Tsavo diesel plant and a vertically-integrated off-grid utility involved
in generation, distribution and sale of electricity in the West Nile region of
IPS is also a partner in the $650 million SEACOM submarine fibre optic cable
which became operational in July 2009. The cable links countries in Eastern
and Southern Africa to international cables in South Africa, India and Europe.
In doing so, the cable provides access to affordable and high quality
bandwidth to the Eastern and Southern Africa seaboard, which was previously
the only part of the world without access to international submarine cables.
The Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN)
The agencies of the AKDN are private, international, non-denominational
development organisations. They work to improve the welfare and prospects of
people in the developing world, particularly in Asia and Africa. While each
agency pursues its own mandate, all of them work together within the
overarching framework of the Network so that their different pursuits interact
and reinforce one another. The AKDN works in 30 countries around the world and
employs approximately 80,000 people. The AKDN’s annual budget for non-profit
development activities is approximately US$ 625 million. The project companies
of AKFED generate revenues of approximately US$ 2.3 billion annually. All
surpluses are reinvested in further development activities.
Please see: www.akdn.org
Blackstone (NYSE: BX) is one of the world’s leading investment and advisory
firms and is an experienced and active investor in the energy and natural
resources sector. Funds managed by Blackstone have invested/committed
approximately $6 billion in the sector to date across four continents. The
firm seeks to create positive economic impact and long-term value for its
investors, the companies it invests in, the companies it advises and the
broader global economy. Blackstone’s alternative asset management businesses
include the management of private equity funds, real estate funds, hedge fund
solutions, credit-oriented funds and closed-end mutual funds. Blackstone also
provides various financial advisory services, including financial and
strategic advisory, restructuring and reorganization advisory and fund
Please see: www.blackstone.com
Sithe Global Power, LLC (Sithe Global) is 99% owned by funds managed by
Blackstone. Blackstone purchased an 80% ownership interest in Sithe Global in
2005 and subsequently increased it to 99% in 2011 with the objective of
facilitating Sithe Global's plans to develop, finance, construct and operate
electric power generation facilities in the U.S. and certain other
international markets. Sithe Global has a portfolio of power projects in
various stages of development and construction in the Philippines, India,
Africa, Europe, the Middle East and other regions totaling approximately 5,000
MW of generating capacity. Sithe Global also continues to pursue other
opportunities within Africa.
Sithe Global is led by a seasoned management and technical team with extensive
independent power project development experience, and a proven record of
identifying project development and acquisition opportunities which create
substantial value for its investors. The Sithe Global management team has
successfully developed over 50 power projects in nine countries with a capital
investment in excess of $5 billion.
Please see: www.sitheglobal.com
For More Information:
Aga Khan Development Network France
Senior Communications Officer
Oriane Schwartzman, +1-347-446-8310
Christine Anderson, +1-212-583-5182
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