23 March 2017
Clifford Chance advises syndicate of Chinese banks on financing for power projects in Jordan
Leading international law firm Clifford Chance advised Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Limited, Bank of China Limited, China Construction Bank Corporation and The Export-Import Bank of China on the US$1,582 million financing of a 554MW gross/470MW net oil shale fired mine mouth power station and open cast oil shale mine in Attarat um Ghudran, Jordan. Financial close for the facility was achieved on 16 March 2017. The financing will be provided on the basis of an export credit insurance provided by China Export & Credit Insurance Corporation (Sinosure). This is the largest private project financing supported by Sinosure to date.
This project is the first to commercially utilise Jordan’s abundant oil shale reserves, and will significantly reduce Jordan’s reliance on imported oil and gas. With an investment value of US$2.1 billion, the project is the largest private sector project in Jordan to date. The two unit power station will be the first oil shale fired power station and mine project in the world funded by limited recourse project financing. It is expected to meet 10-15% of Jordan´s annual power demand. The construction of the 554MW gross/470MW net oil shale fired mine mouth power station will commence shortly and the power station is scheduled to start operation in mid-2020.
Jiahua Ni, finance partner in the Clifford Chance Beijing office noted, "This project is one of a few limited recourse project financings provided by Chinese banks recently. It demonstrates the strength of Clifford Chance’s expertise in complex and multi-jurisdictional transactions. We are very pleased to help the Chinese banks and Sinosure to navigate through all the issues and achieve financial close successfully."
Ashvin Seetulsingh, finance partner in the Clifford Chance London office added, "Attarat showcases China's commitment to its One Belt, One Road strategy, and to the development of technologies to utilise new in-country fuel sources. We are pleased to have been able to help our Chinese bank clients and other project stakeholders bring this landmark transaction to a successful close, through harnessing the strengths of our global projects practice and our track record in Jordan."
The Clifford Chance team involved lawyers from multiple offices, including London, Beijing, Singapore, Sydney, Amsterdam and Dubai. The team was led by partners Huw Jenkins, Jiahua Ni and Ashvin Seetulsingh, senior associates Henry Yip and Tiecheng Liu and associate Dean Bao.