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Chinese-built power plant helps solve energy problems

By Zheng Xin and Yang Ziman | China Daily | Updated: 2016-11-19 07:12

The largest hydroelectric plant ever constructed by a Chinese company in Ecuador is generating 1,500 megawatts of energy, which accounts for nearly 40 percent of the South American country's electricity demand.

The Coca Codo Sinclair hydroelectric plant, along with others built by Chinese companies, will help Ecuador transform from a power-hungry country into a clean energy exporter, and greatly contribute to the country's economic development.

"Ecuador has huge demand for investment in infrastructure, while Chinese contractors such as Power Construction Corporation of China have accumulated experience in related fields at relatively favorable prices," said Hou Xiaotun, manager of the Americas division of State-owned PowerChina International Group, which undertook construction of the hydroelectric plant.

"These competitive advantages represent a reason for our investment in Ecuador."

The Export-Import Bank of China financed 85 percent of the cost through a $1.68 billion loan. The abundant capital pool also backed some other projects in the Latin American country.

According to the company, PowerChina has carried out several projects worth $3.5 billion in Ecuador since entering the market in 2009, with investments in sectors like hydroelectric power, housing development and highway construction. It also has exported construction equipment worth $200 million to Ecuador.

According to Ecuadorean Vice-President Jorge Glas, the largest energy project in Ecuador's history provides 7,000 jobs.

The power plant's annual generation stands at 8.8 billion kilowatt-hours, with part of the electricity to be exported to Colombia. The export this year is estimated at $40 million.

The Ecuadorean government has pledged to guarantee the rights of foreign investors, and will provide tax incentives as well.

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