Japan Corporate News - JCN

Mitsubishi Corp Enters Concentrated Solar Power Generation Business in Spain


Source: Japan Corporate News - JCN

Tokyo, Feb 25, 2011 - (ACN Newswire) - Mitsubishi Corporation ('MC') has acquired a share in Concentrated Solar Power ('CSP') generation plants (4 plants with total of 200 MW in capacity) and become the first Japanese company to own CSP plants under commercial operational stage. All the four plants, until MC's acquisition, are held by Acciona, which is the world's largest independent (non-utility) renewable energy developer and owner.

Also, MC, together with 3 Japanese banks, has agreed to finance Acciona under the support from Nippon Export and Investment Insurance (NEXI).

Project outline

MC has acquired 15% share of Acciona Termosolar from Acciona Energia, the renewable energy business of the Acciona Group. Acciona Termosolar operates four CSP plants in Spain, and until MC's acquisition is wholly owned by Acciona Energia. This transaction will establish MC as the largest owner of CSP generation plant amongst Japanese entities.

All four of the CSP plants are located in southern Spain, a region that is renownedfor receiving great deal of sunlight. With Acciona having obtained a Pre-allocation in Spain's special regime register, the facilities are entitled to receive benefits from the country's Feed in Tariff regulatory regime, which is one of the world'smost well-developed mechanisms to encourage use of renewable energy. Project financing for the plants has also been secured. Three of the plants are already operating commercially, and the remaining Palma del Rio I is also expected to begin operations this autumn. The project's total cost (of all four plants) is around one billion EUR. Each year it is expected to generate approximately 450 million kWh of electricity, while reducing CO2 emissions(*1) by 430,000 tons.

The finance scheme was one of the key factors in realizing this transaction. It was arranged by THE BANK OF TOKYO-MITSUBISHI UFJ, LTD.(BTMU), MIZUHO CORPORATE BANK, LTD. (Mizuho CB), DEVELOPMENT BANK OF JAPAN INC.(DBJ), and MC, and is covered by Overseas UntiedLoan Insurance underwritten by NEXI. MC hopes to expand its business base in this area by leveraging its global network and maximizing added value from this kind of financing expertise.

MC's Objective

In April 2009, MC has signed a Memorandumof Understanding that sets forth a comprehensive strategic alliance with Acciona S.A. to jointly explore the opportunities in the field of CSP, photovoltaic, wind generation and other environment related areas in order to expand our business base. MC and Acciona have already established an initial partnership in March 2009 with the sale of 34% stake in Acciona's 45.8MW photovoltaic plant in Portugal. In 2010, MC launched its Global Environment Business Group to promote greater development of renewable energy and other environment businesses. MC hopes this latest transaction will strengthen its presence in CSP business, and accelerate development in this business area.

About Acciona S.A. (Listed in Madrid Stock Exchange, IBEX 35 company)

Acciona is establishing its renewable energy business in multiple technologies worldwide - including wind, hydro, solar and biomass, and holds 7.4GW of generation capacity in the field of renewable generation, - which ranks them in the top tier of the industry. In addition, Acciona holds biggest development and operation track record in the field of CSP generation.

About CSP

CSP systems generate electricity by using the heat from concentrated sunlight to rotate steam turbine.In sunny regions, CSP is a efficient means of generating electricity with excellent investment potential in the future. Rapid growth is expected in the markets where supportive regulatory framework are established such as countries in southern part of Europe, North America and Australia. Once the technology becomes even more cost competitive, CSP may play a pivotal role to satisfy the world's growing energy demands. This is particularly true in rapidly-developing geographies with abundant sunshine, such as MENA, South America and East Asia.

* Comparison against CO2 emissions from conventional thermal power plant.

About Mitsubishi Corporation

Mitsubishi Corporation (TSE: 8058; ADR: MSBHY) is Japan's largest general trading company (sogo shosha) with over 200 bases of operations in approximately 80 countries worldwide. Together with its over 500 group companies, Mitsubishi Corporation employs a multinational workforce approximately 55,000 people. The Group has long been engaged in business with customers around the world in virtually every industry, including energy, metals, machinery, chemicals, food and general merchandise. Mitsubishi Corporation's commitment to social responsibility is embodied in its corporate philosophy and demonstrated through its extensive programme of cultural, environmental and educational projects worldwide. For more information, please visit www.mitsubishicorp.com .

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