IFC Supports Wind Energy in Sri Lanka through Wind Farm Projects

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is investing $3.8 million in Sri Lanka’s SENOK Group to help the company diversify its portfolio to include wind power projects that will boost the generation of renewable energy and increase the country’s power sources.

IFC’s investment will help develop SENOK’s capacity in renewable energy and support the company’s plans to adopt global environmental and social practices. Under the project, SENOK will fast-track two new 10-megawatt wind plants in Sri Lanka’s Kalpitiya region though its two companies—SENOK Wind Energy (Pvt) Ltd and SENOK Wind Resource (Pvt) Ltd. This project also will help establish a benchmark for similar renewable-energy projects in the future.

“We welcome IFC’s contribution and support of our plans to increase renewable-energy sources in Sri Lanka,” said Pancherine Dias, SENOK Group’s Director of Finance. “This partnership will pave the way for more investments and increased interest in the development of wind power in Sri Lanka.”

SENOK’s wind-power project fits into Sri Lanka’s National Energy Policies and Strategies to produce 10 percent of the country’s electricity requirements through nonconventional renewable-energy sources by 2015. The company will build the two wind-power plants in two phases, with the first phase expected to be completed in December 2011. Both wind farms will supply energy to Sri Lanka’s national grid.

“The SENOK project is IFC’s first direct investment in wind power in Sri Lanka, and we are proud to support the country’s initiatives in the wind sector,” said Anita George, IFC Regional Industry Director – Asia, Infrastructure, and Natural Resources. “Our support of renewable energy ties in with our larger mandate to help mitigate the risks of climate change and increase access to electricity for consumers and industries.”

SENOK pioneered wind power in Sri Lanka with the commissioning of the country’s first 10-megawatt wind-power project in 2010 through SENOK Wind Power (Pvt) Ltd. The project is located in Kalpitiya, which has been identified by the Sri Lanka Sustainable Energy Authority as one of the three regions with excellent wind resources.

Globally, IFC has committed more than $2.3 billion in renewable energy projects since 2005, and aims to triple its investments in renewable energy over the next three years. This investment in SENOK’s wind-power projects is an important part of helping fulfill that commitment.

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in developing countries. We create opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives. We do so by providing financing to help businesses employ more people and supply essential services, by mobilizing capital from others, and by delivering advisory services to ensure sustainable development. In a time of global economic uncertainty, our new investments climbed to a record $18 billion in fiscal 2010. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.

Sri Lanka is a focus country for IFC’s program in South Asia. IFC’s committed $132 mn portfolio covers projects across a range of sectors including infrastructure, tourism, renewable energy, banking, and health care, in addition to advisory support to small and medium enterprises. Through its Advisory Services, IFC promotes sustainable growth among small and medium enterprises by facilitating access to finance and offering capacity-building and training opportunities.