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Chile and EU launch 225mn-euro renewable hydrogen initiatives

The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, together with the President of the Republic of Chile, Gabriel Boric, presided today at the Palacio de La Moneda over the launching ceremony of two new Global Gateway cooperation actions between the European Union and Chile that will contribute to the growing development of the renewable hydrogen industry in Chile.

These actions will both contribute to the implementation of the “Team Europe Initiative for the Development of Renewable Hydrogen in Chile”, a joint effort of the European Union and its Member States to promote cooperation with Chile in the development of its renewable hydrogen economy, and an integral part of the European Union’s investment and connectivity strategy ‘Global Gateway’.

For the European Union, the launch these two new cooperation actions represents a major step in its bilateral relationship with Chile.  These two Team Europe activities include a technical assistance project that will contribute to the development of the renewable hydrogen sector in Chile and the creation of a fund that will directly finance green hydrogen production projects. This is a relevant example of the type of collaboration that the European Union wants to develop with Chile and Latin America that can contribute to the evolution towards new energy sources and climate-neutral and clean economies.

During the official ceremony, the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen explained that, “this is one of the most important projects that we can undertake together. This Renewable Hydrogen Fund, here in Chile, will support the development of this strategic industry. It will create good jobs in the country, and boost its renewable hydrogen exports to the world and, of course, also to its partners, such as the European Union”.

The President of Chile, Gabriel Boric, emphasised his satisfaction that “the EU recognises Chile’s leadership and supports the country’s plan to become the most competitive green hydrogen producer on the planet by 2030”.  He also valued the EU’s interest in implementing concrete projects that will build local capacity and knowledge for the future of Chile and the world. “This industry will provide a value chain that includes knowledge, worker capacity- building, first-level technology, respect and care for nature”.

The event was also attended by the Minister of Energy, Diego Pardow; the Minister of Finance, Mario Marcel; the Vice President of CORFO, José Miguel Benavente; representatives of the European Investment Bank (EIB), State Development Bank of the Federal Republic of Germany (KfW); as well as the Ambassador of the European Union to Chile and Ambassadors of the Member States accredited in the country.

The first part of the ceremony included the launching of the “Team Europe Project for the Development of Renewable Hydrogen in Chile“, a technical assistance program that will strengthen the conditions for the promotion of the renewable and sustainable hydrogen economy in Chile.

This project seeks to ensure an enabling environment for the renewable hydrogen economy; capacity building and knowledge transfer; technology development; generation of impact assessments on infrastructure and sustainability; as well as the development of projects and business cooperation and financing, all relevant measures for the promotion of this industry in the country with a sustainable perspective.

The project has a budget of 4 million euros from the European Union, to be supplemented by another 4 million euros from the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Climate Protection (BMWK).

The second action that was announced is the creation of the “Team Europe Renewable Hydrogen Fund in Chile“, a joint initiative of the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the German Development Bank (KfW), led by the Delegation of the European Union to Chile, which will channel funding for the development of projects for the production and use of Renewable Hydrogen.

This Fund is a project financing mechanism that combines a EUR 16.5 million grant from the European Union’s Latin America and Caribbean Investment Facility – EU LACIF – and EUR 200 million in loans from the European Investment Bank and KfW (each contributing EUR 100 million). The fund will be managed by CORFO and will focus on the development of concrete renewable hydrogen production and application projects in Chile. It is expected to mobilize more private and public financing for renewable hydrogen projects.

Source: BNA America