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Powering the world, cleanly

By ZHENG XIN | China Daily | Updated: 2016-11-28 07:33

Powering the world, cleanly

Tourists get photographed in front of the Three Gorges dam in this file photo. REN WEIHONG / FOR CHINA DAILY

China Three Gorges Corp's ambitious expansion has made it the industry leader

Back in 2008, 'Three Gorges' had already become the world's biggest hydroelectric dam.

Yet, for China Three Gorges Corporation, which built the dam, it marked not an end but the beginning of a long journey-a journey of ambitious expansion, to become one of the world's premier energy groups.

The last eight years' figures suggest CTG is well on its way to realizing its ambition. "Three Gorges Corporation, which was once lagging other leaders in the hydroelectric sector, is proud to announce itself as a leader of the industry now," said Lin Chuxue, executive vice-president of CTG.

That's not an empty boast. CTG now has a total capacity of more than 13 GW overseas, enabling it to become a major player in the global clean energy market.

CTG's overseas electricity generation reached 20 billion kilowatt-hours this year, mainly from hydro power, wind power and solar power. Its facilities are scattered across the globe, including in Brazil, Germany, Greece, Pakistan and Laos.

The company expects that by 2020, about 15 percent of its revenue will be generated overseas.

Lin said the company aims at not only the developed European and American clean energy markets but those endowed with abundant hydroelectric and new energy resources. He sees huge market demand in Africa and Latin America.

The Amazon area and the Parana region in Brazil, which have rich hydroelectric resources, have always been a major focus of the company, he said.

CTG has recently agreed to acquire Duke Energy's 2,090-megawatt business in Brazil for $1.2 billion, to further strengthen its Brazilian subsidiary as a top-tier clean energy generator in the country.

After the acquisition is complete, CTG Brasil will increase its clean energy generation portfolio by 2.27 GW, reaching a total of 8.27 GW of capacity under its management and on proportional equity holdings.

This came after the company won 30-year concession rights to operate two major hydroelectric projects, the Ilha Solteira and Jupia plants, in Brazil, with a total investment of $3.7 billion last year.

So far, CTG has invested in seven hydroelectric projects and 11 wind power projects in Brazil.

Being the second-largest producer of hydroelectric power in the world, Brazil is high in CTG's investment portfolio, as the country strives to build dams to meet its growing energy demand, said Lin.

Wang Shaofeng, executive vice-president of the corporation, told China Daily in a previous interview that CTG plans to use Brazil as a base to tap into other South American countries such as Chile, Peru and Colombia, all of which have rich water resources and experience of dam construction.

"We have been present in the Brazil's hydropower market for several years. For most of the projects, we participated through capital investment," he said. "But with our rich experience, we can do more in Brazil."

Lin said the increasing consensus being reached worldwide is that the energy structure should shift from coal to cleaner alternatives like natural gas, hydropower and wind power. This, he said, is very beneficial to CTG's global play.

"We are cooperating worldwide with private consortiums, governments as well as multinational corporations for our global construction projects," said Lin.

He said the corporation now has overseas operations in more than 40 countries and regions, including more than 80 energy project investments, power plant management operations, construction project contracts and engineering-procurement-construction or EPC contract.

"More and more Chinese companies, State-owned as well as private, are eyeing the going-global strategy, encouraged by the Belt and Road Initiative and other such policies," he said.

"It's good news for the Three Gorges Corporation to see more of our peers going global, for us it's more of cooperation than competition."

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