International law firm Pinsent Masons has advised on a US$1.4 billion deal to fund the construction of two expansion units with a total capacity of 690MW at the Hwange thermal power station complex in Zimbabwe.
The Hwange expansion project is a significant milestone in the rehabilitation of the infrastructure critical to increasing Zimbabwe’s economic output, representing one of the largest foreign investments in the country in recent years.
Construction work will take up to three years, and the finished plant will supply an additional 30% to the country’s generation capacity.
The project also involves a significant upgrade to the country’s transmission network, works that are required to absorb such a significant increase in generation capacity.
Pinsent Masons represented Sinohydro Corporation, which will undertake construction of the power station and the transmission upgrades, in addition to taking a minority equity holding in the project. Pinsent Masons also supported Sinohydro through its China Outbound Belt & Road team, led by Beijing-based partner Amanda Yao.
Amanda Yao said: “This is a significant project for Zimbabwe and the wider region and represents an evolving business model for many Chinese SOEs whereby their participation is no longer just about the construction, but also includes operations and equity ownership.”