Marubeni Corporation and its partners have reached financial close for two small-scale, commercial offshore windfarms at the ports of Akita and Noshiro
The projects are being developed by a special purpose company, Akita Offshore Wind Corporation (AOW) that was established in April 2016.
Although small by commercial standards elsewhere in the world, they will be the first commercial offshore wind projects in Japan. The bottom-fixed windfarms will have a combined capacity of 140 MW.
Together, the partners in AOW have decided to implement construction, operation and maintenance of the offshore windfarms. Loan agreements that will finance the project were concluded on 3 February 2020.
The partners in the projects include Marubeni, Obayashi Corporation, Tohoku Sustainable & Renewable Energy Co, Cosmo Eco Power Co, Kansai Electric Power Co, Chubu Electric Power Co, Akita Bank, Ohmori Co, Sawakigumi Corporation, Kyowa Oil Co, Katokensetsu Co, Kanpu Co and Sankyo Co.
The loan for the project consists of project finance provided by multiple domestic and foreign financial institutions with MUFG Bank, Mizuho Bank and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation jointly acting as the joint mandated lead arrangers.
Marubeni participated in Akita Prefecture’s ‘Public Offering for the Offshore Wind Farm Project’ and was selected as owner/operator of the projects in February 2015, after which it established AOW.
Electricity generated by the offshore windfarms will be sold to Tohoku Electric Power for 20 years under a power purchase agreement based on a feed-in tariff.
Construction of the onshore substations and transmission lines for the windfarms is expected to start in February 2020. Commercial operations are expected to start in 2022.
Noshiro Port will be the base port for operations and maintenance once the windfarms have entered service.