IBERDROLA Chairman Ignacio Galán met with the governor of the US state of Maine, John Baldacci, explaining to him the company's plans for the United States.
In his meeting with John Baldacci at the group's Madrid headquarters, Ignacio Galán expressed his interest in participating in the initiative to promote renewable energies and upgrading infrastructure that is being rolled out both at federal government level and in each state.
Baldacci is visiting Spain with a high-profile government and business delegation from the state of Maine whose members also want to learn about how exactly the group's Toledo-based Renewable Energies Operations Centre (Centro de Operación de Energías Renovables, CORE) works.
IBERDROLA has received major strategic backing from the United States where it has invested a total of $20,000 million. The company employs close to 8,000 people in that country and last year alone it acquired US companies for more than $3,000 million.
Specifically, through its Energy East subsidiary, the group distributes energy in central and southern Maine where it serves nearly 600,000 customers and employs over 1,100 people. IBERDROLA acquired this US company in September 2008 in a friendly takeover in line with the group's international expansion strategy.
Energy East produces, distributes and sells power and natural gas in five northeastern US states: New York, Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Connecticut. The company has approximately two million electricity supply points, a transmission network of over 13,200 km and a distribution network covering nearly 126,000 km. It also has nearly one million gas supply points thanks to a distribution network which covers close to 40,000 km.
The group also sees the United States as a key market for wind power development in which its renewable energies subsidiary invested in excess of $2,000 million in 2008. The company is a global leader in wind power and currently has installed capacity of 3,104 megawatts (MW) in the US and a project pipeline totalling more than 23,500 MW.
Only yesterday the US Treasury Department provided details about the incentives to be awarded under the Obama administration's clean energy stimulus plan. IBERDROLA RENOVABLES has been awarded subsidies totalling $546 million, proportional to the amount the company has budgeted for investment in new projects in this country alone.
The company plans to invest around $6,000 million in renewable energy projects in the US between now and the end of 2012. Ignacio Galán said “President Obama's plans will no doubt encourage us to invest in clean energies in the United States”.
Also, IBERDROLA's recent $2,000 million bond issue in the US will help boost the group's support for this strategic market. On this point, Ignacio Galán indicated that "this bond issue in the US market will strengthen IBERDROLA's operations in this country's metropolitan areas, bringing us full circle: government-backed American capital being invested in America and creating wealth there, thanks to our company".
About Maine's trade mission
Maine's 23-member trade delegation is visiting Spain and Germany from 21 to 25 September to gather firsthand information in Europe's two leading countries in renewable energies.
The trade mission was organised by the Maine International Trade Center, a government agency of the state of Maine founded in 1996 to provide international trade assistance to its nearly 400 members.
The mission's focus on renewable energies reflects Maine's interest in developing its wind power potential. Over 95% of New England's installed wind capacity is in this state, after all, with 10,000 MW of renewable energy yet to be developed.
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