Norway’s wealth fund buys 49% stake in Iberdrola’s Spanish renewables portfolio

OSLO, Jan 17 (Reuters) – Norway’s $1.3 trillion sovereign wealth fund, the world’s largest, said on Tuesday it had agreed to buy a 49% stake in Iberdrola’s 1.3 gigawatt (GW) portfolio of Spanish solar plants and onshore wind farms for 600 million euros ($650 million).

Iberdrola (IBE.MC) will remain co-owner and operator of the portfolio, Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM), the operator of the Norwegian fund, said in a statement.

“The portfolio comprises seven solar plant projects and five onshore wind projects with an installed capacity of 1265 MW, equivalent to the annual electricity consumption of 700,000 Spanish households,” NBIM said.

Solar plants make up 80% of the portfolio, while onshore wind accounts for the remaining 20%. Nine projects are currently under development, with completion expected in 2023-2025, it said.

The companies opened the possibility to extend the deal to other assets in Spain or elsewhere, Iberdrola said in a separate statement.

With its sunny plains, fast-flowing rivers and windy hillsides, Spain aims to produce 67% of its electricity from renewables by 2026. Power companies from all over the world are investing in the country to build the infrastructure to reach that goal.

The transaction with Norges Bank is part of Iberdrola’s plan to sell minority stakes in renewable developments to finance its 150 billion euro 2020-2030 plan mostly devoted to renewables and power grids.

It recently sold a 49% stake in an offshore wind farm in Germany for 700 million euros.

($1 = 0.9233 euros)

Reporting by Terje Solsvik and Inti Landauro, editing by Anna Ringstrom, Kirsten Donovan

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