WASHINGTON Aug 28 U.S. investors will help
finance a $480 million solar power project in Myanmar's
northeastern Mandalay region, which will ultimately provide up
to 12 percent of the country's power generation, the U.S. Trade
Representative and an investment manager said on Thursday.
Under an agreement between U.S.-based ACO Investment
Group and the Ministry of Electric Power, two 150-megawatt solar
plants are due to be built by 2016, most likely in the
Myingyan and Meiktila districts.
ACO Investment Managing Director Hari Achuthan said the
group had secured interest from institutional investors in the
equity component of the deal, worth about $150 million. It was
in talks with development finance institutions about debt to
cover the balance, he told reporters.
ACO Investment expected the project to create 400
construction jobs and 100 permanent jobs at the plants, one of
which would help provide power to develop
the Myotha Industrial Zone.
U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman said the project
marked one of the biggest U.S. investments in the country also
known as Burma, which have already totaled more than $600
million since sanctions were lifted.
The United States has gradually lifted sanctions to
encourage political and economic reforms since the military
government that ran Myanmar for five decades stepped aside in
Froman said inverters, used to convert the current from
solar panels into a current that can be fed into an electrical
grid, and some solar panels used in the project will be made in
the United States.
Companies have not yet been chosen for the work, Achuthan
The United States also signed an agreement to work with
Myanmar to strengthen labor rights and improve labor conditions.
(Reporting by Krista Hughes; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)