YPF launches new power unit with US$3bn investment plan

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Argentina's state oil company YPF unveiled its new power unit YPF Luz, in which the firm plans to invest some US$3bn over the next five years.

The new unit was announced by YPF president Miguel Gutiérrez on Wednesday evening and is a result of a US$276mn deal with GE to acquire 24.99% in the former YPF EE in February. Talks with a potential third partner to sell another 25% have stalled, Gutiérrez said.

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The NOC plans to raise generation capacity over the next five years to become the third biggest power generator in Argentina, up from the current fifth. The plan will involve an investment of about US$2bn, with a further US$1bn currently underway, and the objective is raise the firm's installed capacity from 1.8GW to 4.5GW.

"The company strategy is for YPF to be not only dedicated to hydrocarbons but also integrate all energies, including renewable energies," a segment that it aims to lead in the short term, Gutiérrez said at the event.

YPF Luz, which will supply the NOC as well as others, will operate independently from the oil company and has plans to list on the local stock exchange.

YPF initially entered the electric power sector in August 2013 when it took over the Tucumán thermal generation complex from Pluspetrol, creating YPF EE.

Guitiérrez added that YPF Luz "is going to self-finance with capital contributions, using the long-term project finance model, adjusted for each project, and what the company's own resources allow, but resources will not be allocated from the core business and hydrocarbon investments."