The Altamira II financing has been one of the most hotly-anticipated closes this year in Latin America. Not so much as a quality asset, although tightly-structured non-US assets are very much in demand, but because of what it means for future independent power projects in Mexico. Altamira looks to have proved to the country's prospective sponsors that the fuel supply issues that have dogged progress of new deals can be put behind them.
Altamira II is a 495MW gas-fired combined-cycle plant located in Tamaulipas, and has a 25-year power purchase agreement with the Comision Federal de Electricidad (CFE), Mexico's state electricity monopoly. This specification could apply to any one of the successful financings in the sector. What marks it as a first is that it is financed with gas provided directly from state gas monopoly Pemex Gas y Petroquimica Basica.
The $246 million financing for the Altamira II power project has been 12 months in the making and should create a viable framework for other projects that are stalled while they resolve fuel supply issues. But Altamira's sponsors, Electricite de France and Mitsubishi Corporation, have been able...
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