The International Finance Corporation (IFC) will provide US$78mn in long-term financing for expansion of the generation capacity of Jamaica Energy Partners to help meet Jamaica’s increasing energy needs. The financing will help the company increase its generation capacity from 74 to 124MW.

Jamaica Energy Partners is the first and largest independent power producer in Jamaica and was commissioned in 1995. IFC was the primary financier of an existing facility and the current equity investors are the Latin Power Funds managed by Conduit Capital Partners (62.6%), Caribbean Basin Power Fund (36.4%), and Wartsila Development Financial Services (1%).

IFC’s long-term financing consists of a US$20mn A loan for IFC’s own account, a US$50mn syndicated B loan for the account of participating banks, and an US$8mn subordinated C loan for IFC’s own account. Clico Investment Bank, First Citizens Bank, and FMO will provide financing as B-loan participants.  The 15-year loan maturities are the longest tenors for a private sector project financing in Jamaica and this was the first IFC syndication to include Caribbean banks.

Francisco Tourreilles, IFC’s director for infrastructure, says, “IFC’s financing of the project will help Jamaica expand its generating capacity to meet a fast growing electricity demand, and support the country’s continued economic growth and development. Because of its long term, IFC’s financing will also help reduce the overall cost of power in Jamaica.”

Atul Mehta, IFC’s director for Latin America and the Caribbean, also notes, “This project is an excellent example of how IFC is supporting the modernisation of Jamaica’s infrastructure and how IFC and JEP’s equity partners are leveraging their regional presence to help mobilise funding from banks in Trinidad for projects in Jamaica.”

In the Caribbean, IFC is the leader in providing long-term instruments and sustainability products to help companies grow and compete in the global economy. In the last five years, IFC’s Caribbean portfolio has tripled from US$173mn in FY01 to US$541mn today.

The major sectors of this portfolio are finance and insurance (US$130mn), utilities (US$112mn), transportation (US$95mn), manufacturing (US$63mn), tourism (US$46mn), and telecommunications (US$45mn).