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Brazilian DFI targets renewables after reshuffle at the top

BNDES, along with Banco Santander and Bradesco in Brazil, has agreed to plug $31m into the Ventos do Araipe 3 wind project.

Brazil’s National Bank for Economic and Social Development has arranged a 1 billion real ($31 million; €29 million) loan to help finance the construction of a 359MW wind farm in the country’s northeast.

BNDES is providing part of the funds to support the Ventos do Araripe 3 wind project, with Spain’s Banco Santander and Bradesco, Brazil’s largest private bank, contributing 570.9 million real for the loan. The package also earmarks 5.19 million real for project investments that will qualify for environmental credits.

BNDES said this loan will support the construction of a new transmission system.

Infrastructure bonds are expected to be issued in 2017 to raise 300 million real to complete the project’s financing.

The Ventos do Araripe 3 plant, developed by Brazilian developer Casa dos Ventos, started operations last November. The 1.8 billion real project is located in Brazil’s Piaui and Pernambuco states and consists of 14 wind farms. The scheme is the winner of Brazil’s 18th new energy auction and sixth reserve energy tender.

BNDES, which has made renewables projects a priority for lending, said the Ventos do Araripe 3 will help diversify the country’s electricity mix and save reserves for hydroelectricity.

Renewables has also been a highlight of BNDES president Maria Silva Bastos Marques’ agenda after she was hired to lead the development bank last May, following Michel Temer’s appointment as the country’s interim president.