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Thursday, 17 November 2022

Infinity, Hassan Allam Utilities, Masdar ink 2 GW green hydrogen agreement + EBRD invests more in Infinity

Our friends at Infinity and Hassan Allam Utilities alongside UAE clean-energy giant Masdar have inked a framework agreement for a 2 GW green hydrogen plant they will build in the Suez Canal Economic Zone.

The SCZone plant will be operational by 2026, they said in a statement (pdf).

The investment case: “Egypt enjoys abundant solar and wind resources that can allow for the generation of renewable power at a highly competitive cost, a key enabler for green hydrogen production and is located within proximity to markets where demand for green hydrogen is expected to grow the most, providing a robust opportunity for export,” the three said in a statement.

Who’s on the other side of the agreement? State institutions including the SCZone, the New and Renewable Energy Authority (NREA), Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company (EETC), and the Sovereign Fund of Egypt.

BACKGROUND- The three inked memoranda of understanding back in April for a 4-GW program that includes the plant in the SCZone as well as a second 2-GW facility on the Mediterranean. They’re looking to produce 480k tons of green hydrogen per year by 2030 with an electrolyzer capacity of 4 GW, which would give them the capacity to produce as much as 2.3 mn tons a year of green ammonia for export as well as to supply green hydrogen to Egyptian buyers.

Hassan Allam, Infinity and Masdar are making massive plays on green energy in Egypt: The green hydrogen news comes just days after the three announced a 10 GW wind project in Egypt, which would, when built, be one of the largest wind farms in the world. The three could sign agreements on the wind farm as soon as the end of this year.

The big play: Africa could capture as much as 10% of the global green hydrogen market, helping to create as many as 3.7 mn jobs and adding as much as USD 120 bn to the continent’s GDP, according to a report issued jointly by Masdar at COP27 last week.

SPEAKING OF INFINITY…

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is increasing its stake in Egypt’s renewable energy provider Infinity through a USD 41.5 mn investment, the bank said in a statement yesterday. The EBRD did not disclose the size of its stake in Infinity following the investment. The bank had previously become a shareholder after investing USD 60 mn in the company in 2020. An Infinity spokesperson declined to comment on the transaction when we reached out yesterday.

Where will the funding go? The funding will go towards Infinity’s expansion plans in Egypt and other countries, as well as potential acquisitions, the statement said. An undisclosed portion of the proceeds will be used to fund Infinity’s acquisition of African renewables player Lekela Power.

The EBRD has been investing heavily in Egypt’s renewables sector as of late: The news comes days after the lender committed USD 1.3 bn including “USD 1 bn of private renewable finance, USD 300 mn in sovereign finance and grants of USD 3 mn from its shareholder special fund,” to help Egypt decarbonize its power infrastructure and install new renewable energy capacity. The lender is heading up the energy pillar in Egypt’s newly-launched Nexus on Water, Food and Energy (NWFE).

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