Belo Monte project banking on private investors


Brazil’s proposal to put a major Amazon dam project out for bid in the form of a concession reflects a shift in energy policy, one in which the government now looks to private investors to bankroll even some of its most ambitious power-generation plans. The strategy, endorsed in preliminary form last August, would be used if the controversial Belo Monte hydroelectric project is approved following a series of financial, environmental and engineering studies now nearing completion. But it begs the question: Will the private sector show interest in such a large, high-risk venture as Belo Monte? In the past, the government itself built hydropower mega-projects—notably Itaipú on Brazil’s border with Paraguay, one of the largest dams in the world. But these... [Log in to read more]

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