At an event held on 25 May, attended by Norwegian Minister of the Environment and International Development Erik Solheim, Einar Stenstadvold CEO of newly-named Aqua Imara and Kjell Roland CEO of Norfund and Chairman of Agua Imara, both presented their views on the future of Agua Imara and gave details of the company’s new projects.

Agua Imara’s first project is the Bajo Frio hydroelectric project in Panama, as part of a strategic alliance formed in 2009 with the Panamanian Credicorp Group. Through the JV company Fountain Intertrade Corp, the alliance will develop the 58MW run-off river scheme located in the lower part of the Chiriqui Viejo River, in the Chiriqui province in western Panama. Agua Imara owns 50.1% of the project and will be the industrial developer of the project.

Construction will start this year, with commissioning scheduled for 2014. The project will include a 45m high, 300m long dam, two powerhouses and a 2km long open canal.

In Zambia, Agua Imara signed an acquisition Agreement for a 51% shareholding in Lunsemfwa Hydro Power Company Ltd (LHPC), located near the city of Kabwe.

LHPC currently owns two hydropower plants, Mulungushi and Lunsemfwa, with a combined generation capacity of 46.5MW, which will be increased this year to 52.5MW. LHPC has potential for further development and Agua Imara, together with its Zambian partners, has initiated studies for the further expansion of the company.

LHPC also owns 50% of Muchinga Power Company (MPC), which has the rights to develop projects downstream of the Lunsemfwa and Mulungushi hydropower plants. These project opportunities have a considerable potential, at least 120MW, and most likely more. LHPC has the right to increase its ownership in this company to 60%, once the projects are fully financed. LHPC’s partner in MPC is Infraco, a donor-funded infrastructure company.