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Brazilian asset firm to lend $734.5m for wind farms

Banco do Brasil set to disburse millions of loans for wind farms this year as renewable energy becomes cheaper

The lending of loans from Banco could be a significant boost for wind power in Brazil

Banco do Brasil, Latin America’s biggest lender by assets, may disburse more than 1.5bn reais ($734.5 million) of loans for wind farms this year, according to reports. The figure is up from 1.3 bn reais last year, as renewable energy becomes cheaper, Bloomberg reports.

The total amount will depend on how many wind developers sign contracts to sell energy in government-organised auctions for new power capacity this year, Renato Proenca, executive manager of the commercial department for Banco do Brasil, has said.

Construction costs of wind farms have fallen in recent years, making them more competitive with other sources of energy, the bank said according to Bloomberg.

“In the short to medium term, the expectation is that this type of energy will increase its participation in Brazil’s energy matrix by more than 6 per cent,” said Paulo Rogerio Caffarelli, its vice president of wholesale, international business and private banking.

The bank has lent more than more 1.5bn reais to hydroelectric projects since 2010, according to the statement.

Wind farms produce about 2 per cent of Brazil’s power now, up from 0.03 per cent in 2001, Banco do Brasil said.

Increasing wind power is becoming a big focus for development in Brazil. It follows EU companies, such as French firm Alstom, winning contracts to develop the sector in the BRIC country. The company was awarded contracts to develop 108MW of wind farms in Brazil in April 2012.