The rapid swelling of Abu Dhabi's downstream industrial base and
its ever growing consumer population demand that the emirate shores
up its power generation and water desalination capacity ? fast.
This is a familiar maxim throughout the Gulf States which, until
recently, had scant experience with traditional project financing.
Abu Dhabi, however, is learning quickly, as evidenced by its latest
independent water and power project (IWPP),
Tractebel/TotalfinaElf's Al Taweelah A1 ? only the second such
project tendered to international developers in the United Arab
The deal, the largest of its kind in UAE at $1.3 billion, is
backed by a $1 billion loan which was recently let loose on the
market. Sub-underwriting and syndication are taking place
concurrently. Despite a lengthy tenor (18.5 years), the loan has
received strong interest. Co-leads are BNP Paribas and Citibank,
which are currently courting a group of banks to join the arranging
group. BNP Paribas' Francis Ballard explains, ?it was the quality
of the sponsors that convinced the market that the deal warranted
such a tenor. We...
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