Chinese cabling giant buys into two UK companies, enters Morocco-UK power project

Chinese cabling giant buys into two UK companies, enters Morocco-UK power project

Chinese power cable specialist Orient Cable (NBO) is entering the Morocco-UK Power Project with the acquisition of a stake in the company behind the multi-technology renewable energy project.

Source: Orient Cable (Illustration)

Xlinks First Limited announced it had entered into a share subscription agreement for the placement of common shares for gross proceeds of around £5 million on January 22. The transaction will include participation from Ningbo Orient Wires & Cables for approximately 2.4%.

The transaction needs to be filed or approved by relevant government agencies such as China’s overseas investment authorities and foreign exchange management agencies.

The existing investors in the project are Abu Dhabi Power Corporation-owned Al Maqam Energy Holding, UK-based Octopus Energy and TotalEnergies Renewables UK.

The Morocco-UK Power Project is a multi-technology renewable energy project with approximately 10.5 GW of generation capacity to be constructed in Morocco that would be exclusively supplied to Great Britain’s grid via HVDC subsea cables.

Located in Morocco’s renewable energy-rich region of Guelmim Oued Noun, the project will combine solar and wind generation assets coupled with energy storage, connected exclusively to the UK through dedicated 3,800-kilometer subsea cables with a combined capacity of 3.6 GW at the receiving end.

Scheduled to become operational by the end of the decade, the link is expected to supply clean power to the UK for an average of 20 hours a day, enough green energy to power over seven million British homes by 2030.

In a separate statement, Orient Cable announced its plans to buy 8.5% of XLCC, a UK-based company that produces standardized 525 kV submarine cables, for £10 million.

XLCC is developing the UK’s first HVDC cable factory, located in North Ayrshire, Scotland, which will deliver 3,800-kilometer-long cables for the Morocco-UK Power Project.

To remind, Orient Cable announced its commitment to the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) in May 2022 by setting targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In terms of near-term targets, NBO committed to achieving scope 1 and 2 targets that are in line with a 1.5°C trajectory by 2030, in addition to its existing 2050 Net Zero ambition.