BlackRock to buy 115MW Taiwan solar portfolio

14 May 2019 - 12:00 am UTC

BlackRock Real Assets said in a statement today (14 May), a private fund that it manages has agreed to acquire the entire equity interest in a 115MW Taiwanese solar portfolio made up of 14 projects from two local developers.

About 105MW — the majority being under construction or shovel-ready — will come from Taipei-based New Green Power (NGP), an NGP spokesperson told Inframation. The remaining 10MW were developed by J&V Energy, and most of them have commenced commercial operations, the person added.

The deal marks the US asset manager’s second renewable asset purchase from NGP and J&V Energy, following its maiden solar acquisition (70MW) in Taiwan in August 2018, according to the BlackRock statement. It did not disclose the value of the transaction.

All of the 14 projects have obtained development approvals and secured 20-year power purchase agreements with state utility Taipower with a fixed feed-in-tariff. These are located across different cities on the island, a J&V spokesperson said.

A majority of the assets are ground-mounted solar stations while there are also rooftop solar power facilities. One project, Wenshan Green Light, with a capacity of up to 6.2MW was built on a landfill site in Taichung and started operations in November last year, while another ground-mounted solar power station (4.6MW), built within a Mitsui shopping mall, was completed in December 2018.

Following the signing of the sales and purchase agreement, NGP will provide EPC, as well as long-term operation maintenance and asset management services for the portfolio.

“This acquisition reinforces our commitment to investing in Taiwan, a growth market where local authorities are targeting an installed base of 27GW of renewable power by 2025,” Charlie Reid, portfolio manager of the BlackRock Renewable Power investment team, was cited as saying in the statement.

BlackRock Real Assets currently manages a USD 5bn global renewables investment platform, which has a strategic priority to invest in the Asia Pacific region.

Today’s announcement increases the capacity that NGP operates on behalf of BlackRock to more than 190MW, according to the statement. The sale will also allow NGP to have more funding resources to pursue new solar development opportunities in Taiwan.

“We are open to investors in our future solar pipeline and further explore corporate PPAs going forwards,” said the J&V Energy spokesperson.

In BlackRock’s 70MW portfolio acquisition last year, a majority of the 28 projects are already operational with a balanced mix of ground-mounted, rooftop, and floating solar projects across Taiwan.

The 2019 feed-in tariffs set by the Taiwanese authorities for rooftop solar (over 20kW) on the island range from TWD 4.6902 (USD 15 cents)-NTD 4.1579/kWh; TWD 4.0379-4.556/kWh for ground-mounted solar; and TWD 4.4324-4.9345/kWh for floating solar.


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