September 6, 2018 / 1:14 PM / 16 days ago

Statkraft looking to invest more in hydropower in India - CEO

OSLO (Reuters) - Norwegian power producer Statkraft is looking to expand its investments in hydropower in India, where demand for electricity is growing rapidly, its chief executive said on Thursday.

On Monday, the company announced the acquisition of the 100 megawatt Tidong hydropower project, which is about 60 percent complete, in Himachal Pradesh, north-western India, for an undisclosed sum.

“We don’t have any ‘almost ready’ (projects), but we are screening another 19 hydropower projects in India,” Statkraft Chief Executive Christian Rynning-Toennesen told Reuters on the sidelines of an energy conference.

Statkraft plans to invest about 1 billion crowns (92.1 million pounds) to complete the Tidong project over two years, the company later said.

“It also fits very well with our other hydropower assets in the state of Himachal Pradesh as well as our market operations in India,” it said in an email.

Statkraft was looking for investment opportunities in hydropower, onshore wind and solar power in Europe, South America and India, Rynning-Toennesen said.

The company had an investment budget of around 10 billion crowns, but unlike its Swedish peer Vattenfall , it does not detail its plans.

“We don’t have targets for investing in certain technologies, we want to be flexible... It depends if we find profitable projects,” Rynning-Toennesen said.

Vattenfall, the Nordics’ largest utility, has said it would spend 22 billion Swedish crowns during 2018-2019 on growth investments, with wind power expected to account for 60 percent of the total.

Editing by Kirsten Donovan

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