QUITO, Jan 21 (Reuters) - Ecuador's government said on
Friday it was working to set up a private sector tender for the
construction, financing and operation of a $3 billion
hydroelectric project, which would be the South American
The Santiago project in the Amazonia region, with a capacity
of 2,400 megawatts and eight generation units, would take six
years to build according to technical studies, the state-run
energy company Corporacion Electrica del Ecuador (CELEC) said in
"The concession would include the financing, design,
construction, implementation, administration, operation and
maintenance for 30 years of what would be the largest
hydroelectrical facility in the history of the country," CELEC
The first step is the hiring of a specialized firm to set up
the tender within 18 months, the statement added.
The project, delayed for several years because of lack of
public financing, would allow Ecuador to increase energy exports
to neighbors Peru and Colombia, it added.
Ecuador's conservative President Guillermo Lasso, a former
banker, is seeking to revive the COVID-hit economy through
increased foreign investment in sectors like energy, electricity
Coca Codo Sinclair, with a capacity of 1,500 megawatts, is
Ecuador's largest hydroelectric facility but technical failures
have impeded its operations.
Its capture system is also threatened by regressive erosion
on the Coca river which has also damaged oil pipelines.
(Reporting by Alexandra Valencia
Writing by Julia Symmes Cobb; Editing by Richard Chang)