The loan will fund the rehabilitation and upgrade of turbines in the country’s largest hydroelectric complex, also known as Simón Bolivar Hydroelectric Plant. Six of the 20 turbogenerator units at the project will be replaced as part of the rehabiliation scheme. These units were installed in the 1960s and 1970s, and were also not originally designed to handle the water pressure available today from Guri’s reservoir. As a result, Guri generates 7% less power than will be possible after the units are overhauled.

The project, part of Venezuelan Government´s broader Guri Modernization Program, will consist of replacing rotors, regulators, generators and related equipment, along with upgrading high voltage switchyards and controls systems.

When concluded in 2016, the project will enable Guri to offer 795MW of additional power, equivalent to more than 3% of Venezuela’s total electricity generation capacity. It will also extend the plant’s service life by around 25 years.

Venezuela will contribute a total of $609M in counterpart funds to the project, whose total cost will be around $1.3B. The IDB loan is for 20 years, with a 6 year grace period and an interest rate based on LIBOR.