Hydropower Investment Opportunity in Cameroon, West Africa
A Hydropower Joint Venture in Cameroon’ Noun Wouri Hydropower Projects largest hydropower generation initiative with the potential to produce 3 gigawatts of power; compared to 2.5 gigawatts of power produced by the Niagara Falls (USA) hydropower operation. Cameron is taking place in one of the fastest growing and most stable economies. In addition to meeting growing national power consumption demand, Noun Wouri will create thousands of stable jobs for Cameroon workers to support their families.
Investment Portfolio: Purpose, Duration and Offer for Investment
The Noun Wouri Hydropower Project requires an investment of USD$30 million dollars for completion of Prefeasibility Study and Bankable Feasibility to bring the project to Financial Close. Preference is being given to North American energy funds, energy companies, venture capitalists and high-net-worth individuals desiring a Joint Venture Arrangement as the primary mode of financing the project. The time period for completion of the two studies will be 18 to 24 months based on adherence to the schedule outlined by the Project Engineers, in collaboration with Venture Partners. Equity stake in a Teaming Agreement as the investment/joint venture partner is negotiable. It has been estimated that the Investment Partner could receive about USD $46 Million annually once the hydropower plant is in full production.
100% Guarantee of Investment Funds
All foreign investments in Cameroon are covered by the Washington, DC-based Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) and the Government of Cameroon (GoC), which additionally guarantees every dollar spent on this government endorsed investment in Cameroon. All investments in Noun Wouri is 100% percent secure.
Joint Venture Partners
The Principal Groups largest hydropower business venture include Africa Energy Corporation (AEC) of Cameroon, as principal promoter and developer; Bethel Industrievertretung Inc. Ltd., renowned project engineers, Lahmeyer International (LI) GmbH of Germany, and the TBA Investment/joint venture partners will be the final principal player.
Individual Players are fluent in English and French, Mr. Emmanuel Mudoh Mbah, CEO of BIIL and resident of Cameroon; and the
Senior Project Manager, Mr. Michael A. Gompah, a Buffalo (New York) resident, is the main point of contact for interested investment partners in the Noun Wouri Project.
Bethel is also the developer of the Katsina Ala Hydropower project in Cameroon, with a potential output capacity of 1 gigawatt when in operation. Information about Katsina Ala is readily available online and has been featured in Reuters and Bloomberg News.
Cameroon’s Current Investment Climate and Feasibility
According to the U.S. Statement Department Bureau of African Affairs, Cameroon is eligible for preferential trade benefits under the African Growth and Opportunity Act. The West African nation’s exports to the United States include petroleum, cocoa, rubber, timber, and coffee; and its imports from the USA United include machinery, chemicals, aircraft, vehicles, and plastics. The United States is a leading investor in Cameroon, currently with primary focus on a petroleum pipeline project and energy provision. America and Cameroon have a bilateral investment treaty.
American investors in particular will note that the United States established diplomatic relations with Cameroon in 1960, and the two countries are partners in addressing issues of democracy, regional security, environmental protection, public health, and economic development. Moreover, Cameroon and the United States belong to a number of the same international organizations, including the United Nations, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and World Trade Organization. Besides, Cameroon supports the principle of noninterference in the affairs of third-party countries and increased assistance to underdeveloped countries.
Cameroon’s current literacy rate is a whopping 70.7 % compared to most African countries. Education is compulsory through the age of 14 years, and primary education has been provided for free since 2000.
Bilingual, equally using English and French, Cameroon boasts many quality postsecondary institutions including teacher training and technical schools. Thus, investors are more likely to locate a skilled workforce across rural and urban communities of Cameroon.
Of the many rivers and tributaries of Cameroon, the Wouri River is one of the largest, running 100 miles (southeast), 20 miles (northeast), and 40 miles upriver from the seaport city of Douala. While the Noun River is much smaller, it forms an extensive basin with Wouri River to create what is now future home of the Noun Wouri Hydropower Project.
Built in the 1950s by the French, and refurbished in 2004, the Wouri Bridge is now of great economic importance to western Cameroon and the rest of the country – transporting cars, truck, train traffic, and other items. Obviously, infrastructural development/
Energy Demand and Investment Climate in Sub-Saharan Africa
With more than two-thirds of Sub-Saharan African countries experiencing a debilitating power crisis, it is estimated that $40.8 Billion USD in annual revenue can be generated to meet electricity consumption demand on the world’s second largest and second most populated continent, next to Asia. Africa’s strong economic growth, coupled with rapid increase in electricity consumption and urbanization, is one contributing factor to the crisis. Moreover, a consortium of African governments has identified lack of regional power infrastructure maintenance and distribution capacity as another contributing factor; and called for urgent power sector investments to meet Africa’s unprecedented demand for electricity supply.
Consequently, the private sector will need to play a significant role in closing the demand-resources gap on the continent by providing funding and expertise. The United Nations and the World Bank have determined that hydropower, being sustainable, is the right kind of power generation needed in Africa without endangering the continent’s natural resources, the environment, and the society at large.