The decision means that ENEL will be able to capitalize the geothermal GEO and become the majority shareholder in the business it maintains with the Executive Hydroelectric Commission of the Lempa River (CEL).
According to an article in Elsalvador.com, ENEL had sued its partner for breach of contract in November 2008 because CEL had blocked a $100 million investment, which meant that ENEL went from having just over 36% the company's shares to almost 53%. "The contract, signed in 2002, provides that Enel has the right to capitalize on their investments, that is to say, investments in La Geo are transformed immediately into shares."
The problems detected could lead Cel and the Astaldi consortium, responsible for the project, to submit for international arbitration.
The faults which threaten the foundations of the dam were detected after Storm Agatha, halting all works at the site.
The Executive Committee of the Lempa River Hydroelectric Plant (Cel) and the Italian consortium Astaldi, before heading for arbitration, hired an international expert to determine who has the responsibility to cover the additional costs of a possible plant redesign.
The chairman of the Executive Committee of the Lempa River Hydroelectric (CEL), Nicolás Salume, announced that a study will be done regarding the financing structure offered since there are other countries interested in investing such as Mexico, Italy, Spain and Brazil.
Tenders for the project to double the capacity of the "5 de Noviembre” hydroelectric will begin in 2010.
The Río Lempa Hydroelectric Executive Committee (CEL) is currently reviewing the feasibility study and it expects to complete this stage in June or July of this year. The tender for the project would be for 2010. They believe that the expansion work will take 3 years and cost $150 million.
The BCIE will deliver $31.5 million in March, as an advance for a loan of $162 million, for the start of the construction of the dam El Chaparral.
La Prensa Grafica publishes in its website: "The project will cost $219 million, of which BCIE will contribute 74%, that is to say, $163 million. The remainder $56 million will come from the CEL. The BCIE loan has a time period of 20 years, with an annual interest rate of 6.5%.
The case was presented before an international tribunal in France, which the parties had established to settle conflicts that might arise in the preparation of the LaGeo.
Italian company, Enel, which partnered with the Salvadoran government in the operation of the LaGeo geothermic electric generating plant, took the government to court internationally for $120 million for not allowing it to hold the majority of shares that corresponds to the investments carried out, based on the contract between the two parties.
The initial investment, estimated to be $163 million, will be financed by the Central American Bank for Economic Intergration, as was recently confirmed by the president of the Rio Lempa Hydroelectric Executive Commission (CEL), Nicolas Salume.
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Astaldi Group is one of the most important construction companies in the world as well as a leader general contracting and project finance initiatives in Italy.
Operates in Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama
Phone: (503) 2523-9500
AES Panama is the largest electricity generation company in Panama, in terms of installed capacity as well as delivered energy.
AES Panama is a subsidiary of AES Corporation, with headquarters in Arlington, Virgina, United States, and holds the 49% of shares in the operations of this generating company.
Since late 2007, AES Panama owns four hydroelectric plants with an installed capacity of 482 Megawatts: Bayano (260 MW), Estí (120 MW), La Estrella (47.2 MW), and Los Valles (54.8 MW).
Our main clients are the three energy distribution companies in Panama: Elektra Noreste, S.A., Empresa de Distribución Eléctrica Metro-Oeste, S.A., and Empresa de Distribución Eléctrica Chiriquí, S.A., which represent the 95% of the company’s energy sales. The remaining 5% corresponds to energy sales to Great Costumers, which are businesses with monthly energy consumption greater than 100 kilowatts.
Operates in Panama
Phone: (507) 206-2652
In late 2005, AES began developing the Changuinola hydro power project and currently the project is in the phase of building the roadways to access that facility. The formal cornerstone laying ceremony took place on October 25, 2007.
The project's total completion represents an investment of approximately $563 million and the estimated date for the Changuinola hydro power plant to go into commercial operation is the first quarter of 2011. Through this new facility, AES contributes to the country's development and helps face the growing demand of energy in Panama, which requires an additional 50 MW each year.
The construction of the new Changuinola I Hydro Power Plant:
* is an asset to Panama
* will generate clean and 100% Panamanian energy
* will create opportunities for previously excluded populations
* will contribute to solve the country's energy situation
* will help Panama to continue growing
The construction and operation of the hydro power plant will be under the responsibility of AES, a multinational energy corporation with world-class standards and an active presence in Panama.
Operates in Panama
Phone: (507) 206-2600