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State eyes private partners for R800m fund

Nov 14 2011 11:23 Reuters

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Johannesburg - South Africa has made available R800m for renewable energy projects and is seeking private partners to manage the fund, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said on Monday.

“This is government’s effort (is) to firstly establish its own renewables fund if you like, and ensure that across government we have a more a coordinated approach towards funding.

“We’ve advertised for entities to indicate their interest in managing such a fund. It’s important that we build partnerships with the private sector, with multilateral organisations, with NGOs as well who have the capacity to contribute to projects of this sort,” Gordhan said.

He was speaking at a signing ceremony for a $250m World Bank loan to electricity utility Eskom to develop wind and solar plants in a push to boost sources of clean energy and increase energy production in South Africa.

Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba said the loan showed great investor confidence in South Africa and Eskom.

The loan was approved last month before rating firm Moody’s downgraded the outlook on Eskom’s BAA2 rating to negative from stable, in line with a similar appraisal for the sovereign rating.
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