Bloomberg News

Kenya Electricity May Issue Geothermal-Power Linked Securities

September 02, 2011

Sept. 2 (Bloomberg) -- Kenya Electricity Generation Co. is considering issuing asset-backed securities to finance geothermal exploration, as the country aims to install 4,700 megawatts of steam-driven power over the next two decades.

KenGen, the country’s biggest power producer, may be ready to offer the bonds linked to geothermal resources as early as next year should the authorities allow it, Managing Director Eddy Njoroge said in an interview in Nairobi today.

“We are considering asset-back securities, they would trade on the Nairobi Stock Exchange,” Njoroge said. “We can use steam as an asset to raise funds for drilling. The idea is in the development stage, but we could be ready in six months, a year.”

Kenya’s state-run Geothermal Development Co. estimates the extent of its unexploited resources ranges from 7,000 megawatts to 10,000 megawatts at 14 “high-potential” locations valued at $30 billion.

Peak demand for electricity in Kenya has grown to 1,200 megawatts this year and is expected to hit 15,000 megawatts by 2030, Njoroge said at a conference today in Nairobi. To meet growing demand, the country needs to install about 15,000 megawatts, a third of which will probably come from geothermal energy, over the next 20 years, he said.

Kenya, a nation of 38.4 million people, is East Africa’s biggest economy.

--Editors: Paul Richardson, Gordon Bell.

To contact the reporter on this story: Sarah McGregor in Nairobi at smcgregor5@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Antony Sguazzin at asguazzin@bloomberg.net.


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