A proposed joint venture between Coillte and the ESB has been cleared by the competition authority (CCPC).

The joint venture (JV) will see the development and management of new renewable energy projects, most of which will be located on Coillte-owned land.

This includes 45 onshore windfarm projects, which will generate up to 1000MW of renewable electricity by 2030, enough to supply 500,000 homes.

The ESB will acquire a 50% share in the newly formed subsidiary

The majority of these projects are at early stage development. A number of solar and battery projects located on Coillte land will also be managed by the JV.

The two semi-state companies entered discussions to develop the JV in 2019 after Coillte explored various other partnership options.

Under the JV agreement, Coillte will establish a new wholly owned subsidiary to which its renewable energy division will be transferred. The ESB will acquire a 50% share in the newly formed subsidiary.

In 2018, its turnover was approximately €3.4bn

The CCPC cleared the JV subject to a number of conditions including the nomination of an independent chairperson who will ensure that directors appointed by ESB will not have access to or exchange competitively sensitive information.

ESB’s generating portfolio consists of 5,558MW of electricity generation assets across the island of Ireland and Britain. In 2018, its turnover was approximately €3.4bn, €2.6bn of which was generated in the State.

Coillte owns approximately 438,000ha of forestry land. Most aspects of the business are managed in house including tree planting, growing, managing, protecting and harvesting of forests.

In 2018, Coillte’s worldwide turnover was approximately €330m.