CENACE Suspends Pre-Operational Testingatall Mexican Solar and Wind Energy Facilities, Including Neoen’s El Llano Solar Farm

• CENACE, the government body overseeing Mexico’s electricity grid, has decided to suspend pre-operational testing during the Covid-19 emergency at all solar and wind energy facilities not yet in commercial operation

•Neoen’s El Llano photovoltaic power plant, which had begun injecting power to the Mexican grid in February, is affected by these measures

PVTIME - On April 29, CENACE, the government body overseeing Mexico’s electricity grid, decided to suspend pre-operational testing at all solar and wind energy facilities not yet in commercial operation from May 3 and during the Covid-19 emergency. This decision is one the measures announced by CENACE amid Covid-19 pandemic and the contraction in demand for electricity.

The decision applies to the El Llano solar
plant owned and operated by Neoen, as well as several dozen other power plants,
accounting for several gigawatts of green electricity capacity. As a result, El
Llano had to halt its production on May 3. Construction of the 375 MWp photovoltaic
facility was completed at the beginning of the year. It was in the process of
pre-operational testing with CENACE ahead of the scheduled entry into force of
a long-term power purchase agreement earlyJuly2020. The El Llano power plant
had started to inject power to Mexico’s electricity grid in February, with this
energy being sold in the spot market. Neoen’s El Llano solar power plant
generates some of the world’s most price-competitive electricity (less than $19
per MWh).

The EBITDA shortfall caused by the temporary
shutdown of its El Llano facility is estimated at up to $2million per month.
Neoen stands ready to put the El Llano power plant back into service to
recommence injecting power to the grid and resume pre-operational testing as soon
as CENACE lifts its suspension. Neoen, which first moved into Mexico in 2013,
remains firmly committed to supplying the country with green, reliable, and
cost-competitive energy.

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