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(Sitting, from left) YTL Power Generation Sdn Bhd executive director Yeoh Keong Hann, Huang Guoqing of Yudean Group, Eesti Energia chairman Hando Sutter and management board member Margus Vals, and other officials at the signing of the oil shale power project agreement recently.

KUALA LUMPUR: YTL Power International Bhd will jointly lead a US$2.1 billion (RM8.44 billion) oil shale-fired power plant and mine project in Jordan with a new partner, China’s Yudean Group.

The project in the Hashemite Kingdom will be developed under Attarat Power Company (Apco).

Besides YTL Power, Apco’s existing shareholders are Estonia’s Eesti Energia AS and Near East Investment (NEI).

YTL recently inked an equity agreement with the partners to raise its stake in Apco to 45 per cent from 30 per cent.

They also sealed the agreement to facilitate Yudean’s entry into the joint venture.

According to a statement by YTL Power, Yudean had agreed to buy 45 per cent of Apco’s shares, while Eesti Energia would reduce its stake to 10 per cent and NEI would exit the project.

“YTL Power is very pleased to increase our stake to 45 per cent and welcome Yudean to be our partner in jointly leading the development of this milestone project to support the Jordanian government in furthering its policy of energy independence,” said its executive director Datuk Yeoh Seok Hong in the statement.

He said the 554-megawatt oil shale-fired power plant would cover a substantial portion of Jordan’s energy needs and reduce its dependence on oil imports for power generation.

“The sponsors’ combined extensive experience in power generation and mining will drive this project to fruition,” said Yeoh.

Earlier this year, Apco had signed agreements with Bank of China and Industrial and Commercial Bank of China for the project funding.

The US$1.6 billion (RM6.4 billion) debt financing facility will be provided on the basis of support by China Export & Credit Insurance Corp (Sinosure).

“The sponsors are in the midst of fulfilling a number of conditions precedent to full financial close, including receiving final approvals for the export credit insurance from Sinosure and the government of China.

“The power plant is scheduled to start generating electricity for local consumption in 2019,” said YTL Power. 

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