Egyptian-Spanish JV scoop award for record financing deal
Aqualia, the water subsidiary of Spanish domiciled Fomento de Construccion y Contratas, FCC has been awarded ‘Water Deal of the Year’. The award was granted by Global Water Intelligence (GWI) for the deal, contracted in 2009, which has made the biggest contribution to the advancement of public-private partnerships (PPP) in the international water sector.
New Cairo WWTP financing, Egypt - What is it?
A 15-year EGP566 million ($102 million) debt package from a club of four Egyptian banks to meet 70% of the engineering, procurement and construction cost of a new 250,000m3/d wastewater treatment project to serve New Cairo city. The balance of the EPC cost is being met through developer equity.
Who is responsible?
A 50:50 developer consortium of Aqualia and Orascom Construction Industries closed the financing 7 months after being awarded the $480 million 20-year build-own-operate-transfer contract by the Ministry of Housing, Utilities and Urban Development. National Sociéte Générale Bank acted as facility agent on the debt package. The IFC acted as lead advisor to the Egyptian government on the project.
What makes it special?
• New Cairo is Egypt’s first major PPP transaction, and it broke new ground in Egyptian infrastructure financing by harnessing liquidity among Egypt’s domestic commercial lenders to secure long-term project debt.
• The sponsors overcame the lack of a precedent to establish a solid blueprint for wider regional and international participation in future Egyptian project financings.
• With Egypt’s overarching PPP law still being hammered out, the New Cairo deal is a major vote of confidence from lenders in the government’s infrastructure procurement strategy.
The award, presented at a ceremony in Paris yesterday presided by Her Majesty Queen Noor of Jordan, was collected by Miguel Jurado, Aqualia's Vice President and Head of International Operations and Tamer Shafik, Deputy Commercial Director at Orascom Construction Industries (OCI).
Four banks participated in the pool: National Société Générale Bank SAE (NSGB), Commercial International Bank (CIB) Egypt SAE, Arab African International Bank SAE and Ahli United Bank (Egypt) SAE. NSGB acted as agent bank and CIB as custodian.Baker & McKenzie is the project's legal advisor.
The highly sought after GWI awards are acknowledged as the top distinctions in the water industry worldwide. In 2007, Aqualia was also named ‘Water Company of the Year’ by GWI.