King Mohamed VI on Friday, 28 March, laid the foundation stone of the Ain Beni Mathar thermo-solar electricity plant at a ceremony attended by many people, including the AfDB's Resident Representative in Morocco, Nono Matondo-Fundani.
The ceremony, held at the site of the project, 86 km to the south of Oujda in eastern Morocco, signified the official commencement of works on the two-phased combined and integrated power station with an installed capacity to generate 472 MW of electricity, including 20 MW from the solar component.
The cost of the project is estimated at € 400 million. The Bank will partially finance the project with two loans amounting to € 287.85 million, of which € 36.45 million was approved in March 2005 and € 151.40 million in December 2007.
Other sources of funding include $ 43.20 million from the Global Environment Fund (GEF), a loan of € 43 million from the Spanish Development Agency (ICO) and the National Electricity Corporation (ONE) of Morocco.
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