Spain's Repsol invests $869 million in electricity

MADRID (Reuters) - Oil major Repsol said on Wednesday it had bought the electricity assets of fellow Spanish firm Viesgo for 750 million euros ($868.73 million) as part of a bid to diversify into low-emissions business.

Refiners across the world are aiming to reduce carbon emissions from their operations and help meet U.N.-backed goals to limit global warming, and Repsol has expressed support for the 2015 Paris agreement on climate change.

The deal will give Repsol a further 2,350 megawatts (MW) of production capacity, the company said in a statement, advancing its aim to reach 2.5 million gas and electricity consumers in Spain by 2025.

Two combined cycle gas plants, one in northeastern Spain and one in the south, will account for 1,650 MW of this capacity, and the remaining 700 MW will come from three hydro-electric centers in the northwest of the country.

Viesgo’s gas and electricity marketing business is included in the deal, but its coal plants are not. Repsol said the acquisitions would increase its own energy efficiency, reducing the cost of running its five main bases in Spain.

The deal was struck with Viesgo’s two main shareholders, Macquarie Infrastructure and Wren House Infrastructure, the infrastructure arm of the Kuwait Investment Authority.

Reporting by Isla Binnie; Editing by Mark Heinrich