The project consists of the implementation of two SHPPs, structured in a cascade with total installed capacity of 15 MW in Northeast Albania. The upstream SHPP is Zais SHPP (Zais), with a capacity of 2.3MW, arranged with a large catchment area. The water released by Zais SHPP, will then be used by Seka SHPP (Seka) in addition to the water flows derived by Seka’s own catchment area. The Project’s location is near the Seka and Zais villages. The SHPPs are fed from the Melthi and Urakes streams.
Phase 1: Technical Due Diligence of the Seka-Zais project;
Task a: Review of the project environment and infrastructure
This task focuses on a technical analysis of the environment and infrastructure of the area where the SHPPs will be built. The specificities of the project site, the hydro resource potential, the power interconnections and the grid system. The regulatory and environmental requirements will also have to be addressed. To this end, the Consultant will:
- Review and opine on the position of the SHPPs in the country power system, as well as the network and grid code/practices and the operational regimes. We understand this last item refers to the operational practice of the plant;
- Review and advise on the appropriateness of the proposed technical characteristics of the plant;
- Assess the suitability of the site to accommodate the plant and interconnection facilities;
- Review, evaluate and opine on the resource assessment studies, including in particular, the expected load factors and annual power generation for the main probability scenarios;
- Review and opine on the legal and regulatory issues for the construction of the Project (governing bodies, permitting and authorisations, general regulation), including of all available permits, licenses and other approvals, including the power purchase agreements and confirm sufficiency of such.
Task b: Review of the Project
The Bank will need to be comfortable with the planned construction budget and timetable as well as the technical characteristics. For that purpose, the Consultant will need to perform a detailed risk assessment, including among others:
- Review and opine on the basic design data and other studies and comment on the technical appropriateness of the Project in accordance with prudent industry standards and practices;
- Review the historical hydrological record of the Project area (including all available measurement data and calculations) and adopted flow record series (including methodology to arrive at this series) to assess their adequacy and reliability;
- Review of assessment of maximum flood conditions and related return periods (e.g. 1’000, 5’000 and 10’000-year return periods) and peak flood values used in the design of the waterworks;
- Provide an independent recalculation (considering also potential upstream irrigation projects if any) of the energy yield, based on the representative hydrology data sets and the Sponsor's inputs validated by the TA, and provide long term energy yield projections (together with its monthly breakdown) for the main probability scenarios (P90, P75, P50);
- Review and opine on the proposed electricity connection facilities, agreements and operation practices of the plant with the grid system (e.g. grid code/practices, grid and transmission line issues, load flows and interconnections);
- Review and opine on the EPC contract, all the other supply and works contracts, the cost estimations and budgets, the level of development costs and fees, the implementation plans for the necessary supplies, works and services, and provide independent opinion and advice regarding appropriateness and propose scope for improvements;
- Review and opine on the EPC contracts and O&M contract key issues, including guarantees, proposed liquidated damages regime, testing regime, commissioning regime, contractors' experience and related issues;
- Review and opine on the adequacy of the main equipment to be used for the Project, including their expected degradation metrics, manufacturing and design quality and materials, applicable certifications and warranties under the weather conditions of the Project site;
- Assess the EPC and O&M contractor’s and subcontractors’ experience and capabilities to meet their contractual commitments during the loan tenor;
- Assess construction budget and overall investment costs, including fixed price and reimbursable aspects of the construction contracts (transportation etc), liquidated damages, insurance and bonds;
- Review proposed construction program, risk allocation and timetable, and assess risks to base case take over and targeted commercial operations date;
- Assess the adequacy of the operational period expenses by analysing each main sub item (personnel, O&M, insurance, distribution fee, etc);
- Verify and support financial model inputs, confirm that the technical and operating assumptions are acceptable and used appropriately within the model.