Boston, MA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 03/11/2014 -- We are maintaining our 2014 forecasts and long-term forecasts for power generation in Brazil, as our assumptions remain relevant. Hydroelectric power accounts for, and will continue to account for, the key source of power supply in Brazil. Representing 78.89% of electricity generating capacity of the country, hydroelectricity remains unreliable - with generating capacity fluctuating between wet and dry years and controversial - with stoppages commonplace - as illustrated by recent court rulings. In addition, many of Brazil's rivers are far from populated cities, adding expense to projects as lengthy transmission networks are required. It is of little surprise, then, that the government is seeking to diversify the electricity mix. That said, we believe that although the share of hydropower in the energy mix will decline by the end of our forecast scenario, it will be continue to be the dominant fuel for electricity generation of the country.
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With Brazil facing a key power deadline - the country will host both the FIFA World Cup and the Olympic Games in the next three years - the government is keen to invest in its power sector to ensure that its electricity sector is up to the challenge of being under a global spotlight. It has launched a series of tenders for power auctions during 2013, and will finish the year with six hydroelectric power projects, opening for bids in December. We stress, though, that the repeated delays to other hydroelectric power projects in the country may deter potential bidders - Brazil's complex bureaucratic processes will do little to attract investors.
We forecast Brazil's power sector will continue to post strong demand, even though some risks remain, with growth in consumption expected to average 3.79% between 2013 and 2023. . BMI estimates that total generation capacity in 2013 stood at 570.26 terawatt hours (TWh). We forecast that this will increase to 690.20TWh by 2018 and to 817.31TWh by the end of our forecast period in 2023. This equates to an annual average growth rate of 3.64% between 2013 and 2023.
Key developments in Brazil's power sector:
- Record heat in the country is putting pressure on energy prices. At the end of January 2014, people with air conditioning drove nationwide energy consumption to an all-time high. The strong demand, which is being met partly through increased use of thermoelectric power, means spot energy prices are set to double in coming days to record levels beyond 800 reais ($326.50) per kilowatt-hour. Those prices could affect energy bills for customers and factories - a threat to economic growth already expected to be just 2.3%in 2014. according to our Country Risks forecast.
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