Suez, Endesa to bid on $5 billion Brazil Amazon dam

Friday, November 23, 2007

French utility company Suez, Spain's Endesa and banks including Santander filed to bid for a major electricity project in Brazil's Amazon, the country's electricity regulator said on Friday.

Suez joined with Brazil's Eletrosul, part of federal power giant Eletrobras, to bid on the 9 billion-real ($5 billion) Santo Antonio project on the Madeira river in the Amazon. The government will auction a concession to build and operate the 3,150 megawatt dam on Dec. 10.

Electricity regulator Aneel said on its Web site four other groups also filed documents to bid on the Santo Antonio project, which together with the planned Jirau plant on the same river are seen as vital to guaranteeing electricity supply in Brazil after 2012.

Endesa's Brazilian unit will bid together with federal power generator CHESF, CPFL Energia and construction group Camargo Correa.

Santander and Portugal's Banif formed an investment fund as part of a consortium with state power company Furnas, utility Cemig and construction giants Odebrecht and Andrade Gutierrez.

Argentina's Industrias Metalurgicas Pescarmona, or IMPSA, joined with holding company Alupar Investimentos, Brazil's Schahin group and local engineering firm UTC Engenharia in a separate group.

Eletronorte, another Eletrobras unit, was the only company bidding on its own.

(Reporting by Renata de Freitas and Elzio Barreto, editing by Leslie Gevirtz)

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