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Hydro-Québec buys into Senegal

A consortium headed by Canada’s Hydro-Québec International (HQI) is to purchase 34% of the shares of Senegal utility Societe Nat-ionale d’Electricite (Senelec) for C$100M. C$50M will be contributed by HQI. The Senegal government will retain 41% of the shares, and the remainder will be available for Senelec employees to buy. The consortium will be a partner for Senelec, HQI says, responsible for managing all electricity production, transmission and distribution in Senegal.

For HQI, besides dividends in the order of C$9M annually, other economic spinoffs are related to providing expertise to manage Senelec and to selling engineering and project management services. The company has already been active in Senegal for more than 15 years. In particular, it has participated with SNC Lavalin in studies on the development of the Senegal river and with Dessau on the development of the Gambia river.

Senegal has experienced an average demand growth of 5.5% over the past five years. Its 307MW capacity, from 21 power plants, serves 330,000 customers.