QIC backs AGL's 1-GW large-scale renewables fund in Australia
Nyngan Solar Plant. Image by Clean Energy Council (www.cleanenergycouncil.org.au).
Australian institutional investment manager QIC will put AUD 800 million (USD 601m/EUR 547m) in the Powering Australian Renewables Fund (PARF), set up to build a 1-GW large-scale renewables portfolio in Australia.
The commitment from QIC’s managed clients, including the Future Fund, announced today comes in addition to Australian power producer AGL Energy Ltd's (ASX:AGL) AUD 200 million of cornerstone equity. PARF’s goal is to develop, own and manage AUD 2 billion-3 billion of large-scale renewable energy projects in the country.
QIC and AGL expect the fund to be the largest single owner of renewable energy capacity in Australia, contributing up to 10% towards the Federal Government’s Renewable Energy Target (RET).
AGL said in a separate statement it is anticipated that the utility's proposed up to 200-MW wind farm in Silverton, New South Wales and up to 350-MW wind project in Coopers Gap, Queensland will be the first two projects offered to the fund. The PARF is also expected to acquire AGL’s 102-MW Nyngan and 52-MW Broken Hill solar farms as seed assets and to commit to its first new build project by March 2017.
The strategic partnership's goal is to make use of AGL’s development expertise and its ability to provide long term offtake agreements as a major energy retailer in Australia. QIC, on the other hand, brings active asset management expertise and deep sector capability.
“We expect renewables, in combination with energy storage and smart grid technologies, to disrupt the existing electricity value chain in the future,” said Ross Israel, QIC’s Head of Global Infrastructure. “In partnership, QIC and AGL are able to develop, own and manage both existing (brownfield) and new (greenfield) renewable assets, while establishing a governance framework to derisk the investment.”