RDIF portfolio co breaks ground on Karelia hydropower plants

Private Equity Wire, 12.10.2016

Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) portfolio company Nord Hydro-Beliy Porog has broken ground on the construction of small hydropower plants on the river Kem in Karelia, Northwest Russia.

The breaking ground ceremony was held in the presence of the Head of the Republic of Karelia Alexander Khudilainen, RDIF executives and its international partners Sinomec, the New Development Bank (NDB) founded by the BRICS countries, and other organisations involved in the project.

The construction of two Beloporozhskaya hydro power plants with a total capacity of 49.8 MW is the NDB's first project in Russia. As of today, it is the bank's first and only project to have broken ground.

The construction of Beloporozhskaya HPPs, which will supply electricity to the region's population and industries, is included on the priority projects list of the Federal Target Program "Development of the Republic of Karelia for the period till 2020". The construction is expected to be completed before 2020. RDIF joined as project investor in 2015.

Kirill Dmitriev, CEO of RDIF, says: "For this project, we have developed a unique financing mechanism with the participation of several top-tier financial institutions. Construction of environmentally friendly facilities in the energy-deficient region will mark a significant step forward for the social and economic development of Karelia. It is important that through a combination of equity and debt financing the project creates attractive investment opportunities for international partners of RDIF."

Vladimir Kazbekov, vice-president of the New Development Bank, says: "The first Russian project of the bank is fully consistent with the task set out by the BRICS leaders to promote green and renewable energy. I am sure that the New Development Bank will be a significant source for attracting long-term investments to fund large-scale infrastructure projects in Russia."

Khudilainen says: "Renewable, clean energy sources are the future of the industry. They will ensure a better quality of life for consumers through stable and uninterrupted energy. I am sure that Karelia's innovative experience in the construction of small hydropower plants could in the future be exported to the CIS and foreign countries interested in the production of safe and clean energy."