In 2015, EBRD provided a sovereign guaranteed loan of EUR 200 million to the Societe Nador West Med (NWM) for infrastructure development at the new Nador West Med Port in Morocco (the "Project"). The loan will be used for the construction of the port infrastructure (breakwaters, quays, dredging, etc) which will be used by private concessionaires for commercial handling activities. EBRD is now considering an additional financing of EUR 100 million to NWM to close a financing gap identified following the increase in the volume of works resulting from technical adjustments and geotechnical unforeseen aspects.
The Government of Morocco (GoM) is developing a major new port and industrial complex around 30km from the town of Nador, on Morocco's Mediterranean coast. The Project is part of a wider development plan for the Nador region and will directly contribute to the reduction of regional disparities and support the economic development of the Orientale Region, as well as improving regional access to infrastructure. This development which will be undertaken by NWM will involve a mixed cargo port including terminals for containers, hydrocarbons, bulk (including coal) and Ro-Ro as well as a service quay and an industrial investment zone designed to attract international investors, comprising a 1,500 ha Free Zone and an additional 2,500 ha area outside the Free Zone.
ETI score: 60
The Project will finance a major greenfield infrastructure asset and will: (i) expand private sector participation vertically in port activities but also horizontally by expanding trade opportunities; (ii) support the development of export-oriented industrial activities; (iii) demonstrate the benefits of a landlord model with all port operations and supra-structures financed and operated by the private, supporting the sustainability and commercialisation of public services and infrastructure ; and (iv) set improved operating practices in the Moroccan port sector by including a number of structural and management measures relating to climate change adaptation.
The Transition Impact rating is 'good'. The proposed loan extension will enhance the transition qualities of the original loan. Transition impact of the Project arises from the Competitive and Inclusive transition qualities:
- Primary Quality i Competitive. The Project will support the development of a company transformation plan from a construction-focused entity into a commercially focused port.
- Secondary Quality - Inclusive. The Project is expected to contribute to the setting up of a public/private platform on skills governance in the port sector and selected industries to promote access to skills and the development of human capital in the Oriental region.
SOCIETE NADOR WEST MED
The Societe Nador West Med, a limited company fully owned by the Government of Morocco. The Borrower was created specifically to develop the Nador project.
EBRD Finance Summary
A sovereign guaranteed loan of EUR 200 million signed in October 2015.
An additional sovereign guaranteed loan of EUR 100 million is considered to be extended to NWM in 2022.
Total Project Cost
EBRD additional financing effectively bridges a financing gap due to adverse market conditions. This is the second transaction with NWM for the same Project scope.
Environmental and Social Summary
2016 Update: Construction of the port project has been delayed; however works are anticipated to begin in H2 2016. At this time, NWM is in the process of retaining national and international EHSS consultants to assist its team implement the Environmental and Social Action Plan (ESAP) in accordance with the Bank's Performance Requirements. NWM will issue its first Annual Environmental and Social Monitoring Report in Q1 2017, as well as consultants to assist in contract management. The Project has been categorised as A in accordance with the 2014 Environmental and Social Policy. The port is envisioned to accommodate future container ship operations, onsite processing and storage of petroleum/hydrocarbons products, and the storage, processing, handling and transport of other bulk materials including coal. EBRD's loan will be for the construction of the basic port infrastructure only (e.g. breakwaters, quays, landing facilities, access road, marine dredging etc.) which will, in the operating phase of the Project, be used by concessionaires for commercial handling activities. These future operations within the port itself are not considered to be part of the current Project and as such will be assessed by the Company in the future in accordance with both Moroccan and EBRD environmental and social requirements. Nevertheless, given the risks associated with these types of future operations, the Bank's Environmental and Social due diligence assessed whether the Company has adequate contractual arrangements, EHSS management systems and staffing capacity to manage these risks in line with both national and international good practices. Potential environmental and social impacts associated with this project include, but are not limited to (i) loss of marine and terrestrial habitats (ii) dredge materials management (iii) water and waste water management, including spills response, (iii) solid waste / hazardous waste management (iv) traffic management (road and marine) (v) occupational health and safety (vi) contractor management (vii) air, noise and dust management (viii) community health and safety and (ix) economic displacement due to the loss of agricultural lands associated with the project's access road and also due to impacts on fishermen operating along the beach in Betoya Bay. To address these issues, a comprehensive Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) has been prepared for the project (July 2014), along with an Environmental Management Plan (November 2014). The national EIA has also been complemented with the preparation of various technical and environmental and social studies, including project specific and regional socio-economic studies. Given the potential risks and impacts associated with this large greenfield project, the Bank retained an independent environmental and social consultant (IESC) who concluded that the project and overall ESIA disclosure package have been structured in accordance with the Bankis 2014 Environmental and Social Policy and Performance Requirements. The EIA (and supporting documents), Environmental and Social Action Plan (ESAP), Stakeholder Engagement Plan (SEP), Land Acquisition and Livelihood Restoration Framework (LRF) and Non-Technical Summary (NTS) are disclosed on the Company's website. The ESIA Disclosure documents was disclosed for 120 days prior to EBRD seeking Board approval for the project. The Project will continue to be monitored by the Bank in line with the commitments in the EIA, ESAP, regulatory requirements and the EBRD's Performance Requirements. NWM will also provide the Bank with annual environmental and social reports, including updates on the implementation of the ESAP beginning in Q1 2017. The Bank will conduct monitoring visits, as required, and require monitoring by the IESC to be continued throughout construction and initial operations. This PSD will be updated annually.
2017 Update: Construction of the port began in Q2 2016, with site set up, dredging and initial earthworks. NWM Construction activities were monitored by EBRD and the Independent Environmental and Social Consultant (IESC) in February and July 2017.
During each visit of the project, the progress of the construction is checked with respect to the following: Site preparation, construction and installation activities; Permits, licenses and authorizations for construction and operation; Execution of the work in line with the approved documentation, plans, specifications, including the Bank's Performance Requirements and ESAP, cost breakdown and time schedule; Quality of design and work, team organization, progress and cost control systems in place; Achievement of payment milestones in accordance with payment requests of contractors; Estimation of delays for completion due to delayed construction progress; and Reasonableness of "Variation Orders", if any instructed under the contract: appropriateness, rationale, financial value, likely impact on Project implementation, i.e. schedule and budget.
Project monitoring has confirmed that good progress has been by the Client in establishing and rolling out their ESMS: Organisational capacity to manage E&S risks has increased both at NWM and Contractor level, alternatives are looked for to reduce impacts (e.g. design lower dam for the Oued N'Tya diversion, delimitation of the free-zone footprint), and a number of KPIs have been defined and monitoring of performance has started. A number of potential resettlement / livelihood issues (both physical and/or economic) were identified with the Oued N'Tya diversion and for the construction of the access road to Harcha Quarry. This work is ongoing and EBRD is satisfied that this is progressing in accordance with EBRD PR5 requirements. Progress against the ESAP has been satisfactory.
2022 Update: Since the start of construction, nine monitoring site visits have been conducted by the IESC and the EBRD.In July 2022, ESD conducted the most recent monitoring site visit with the objective of assessing the status of ESAP implementation and continued E&S capacity of the client. The project is broadly aligned with 2014 ESP and ESAP requirements. In response to the challenges encountered in relation to the relocation of Ammophila arenaria, a perennial grass growing in the sands of beach dunes, the Client will continue to deploy efforts focusing on the preservation of the naturally occurring plants at the relocation site in line with the remedial actions identified in 2021. Furthermore, a review of the project's climate resilience during the operational phase indicated the need to undertake additional assessments of long-term water supply to the port and ancillary facilities. The updated ESAP will therefore include a new measure to assess available options for sustainable water supply during operations. In view of improving climate resilience of the project, EBRD also identified a need to update the existing emergency preparedness and response plan in order to cover potential dam failures to address risks associated with the diversion of Oued N'Tyia. The Project will continue to be monitored by the Bank in line with the commitments in the EIA, updated ESAP, regulatory requirements and the EBRD's Performance Requirements.
Technical Cooperation and Grant Financing
The existing TC support for this operation includes assistance with project implementation through provision of contract implementation and management support, assistance to the Company with implementation of the Environmental and Social Action Plan and funding of a Lenders' Monitor. The TC programme is subject to further amendments and confirmation.
Additional TC support will also be mobilised to strengthen the TI of the Project in the areas of skills development, transition to a commercially focused operational entity and port integration potential in the hydrogen supply chain. TC support for this operation will require a total TC funds of EUR 1,000,000 and is expected to be funded by the EBRD Shareholder Special Fund ("SSF").
Company Contact Information
Mohamed Jamal Benjelloun
PSD last updated
08 Nov 2022
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