IEnova closes Mexico project loan

Sempra Energy subsidiary Infraestructura Energética Nova (IEnova) says it has completed $270m financing for the first 155MW phase of the Energia Sierra Juarez wind project in Mexico.

Financing was arranged by a syndicate of banks with Mizuho Bank as coordinating lead arranger Nacional Financiera and Institución de Banca de Desarrollo, Norddeutsche Landesbank Girozentrale and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation as lenders.

The facility includes letters of credit and long-term debt maturing 18 years following commercial operation of the project.

Energia Sierra Juarez is the first cross-border wind project to be built between Mexico and the US. The generating assets are sited in Mexico with transmission infrastructure located in both countries.

Located in the Municipality of Tecate, Baja California, Mexico, it consists of 47 Vestas 3.3MW turbines.

Sempra unit San Diego Gas & Electric is purchasing the power under a 20-year contract. Commercial operation is scheduled for first half 2015.

IEnova earlier announced a deal to sell 50% of the first project phase to InterGen subject to regulatory approvals in both countries.

"This financing agreement is another key milestone in the development of the Energía Sierra Juarez project and an important component of our business model and growth strategy," says IEnova chief executive Carlos Ruiz Sacristan.

The company had invested more than US$2.8bn in operating assets and projects under construction in Mexico through 1 January.