Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL) is further increasing its focus on the offshore wind sector through a new dedicated investment company and the acquisition of a stake in the company that operates the first utility-scale offshore wind farm in Taiwan.
Together with wind turbine maintenance specialist Hokutaku, Japan’s largest shipowner by fleet size, has established the Hokutaku MOL Wind Energy Investment, aiming at about ¥10bn($86m)-scale investment in offshore wind energy projects – specifically in operating companies with the objective of constructing offshore wind farms.
Meanwhile, MOL, Toho Gas, and Hokuriku Electric Power Company have struck a deal with Macquarie’s Green Investment Group to acquire a 25% stake in Formosa I International Investment, which indirectly operates the 128 MW Formosa 1 offshore wind farm located off the coast of Miaoli County, Taiwan.
The acquisition is planned to be carried out through a special purpose company (SPC) jointly established by the three companies in Taiwan, in which MOL, Toho, and Hokuriku will own 37.5%, 37.5% and 25.0% of the shares, respectively. The transaction is expected to complete after all the necessary procedures, including approvals from the Taiwanese authorities. This will mark the first investment made into offshore wind farms outside of Japan by these three companies, MOL said.
Since the establishment of a dedicated offshore wind business last year, MOL has been growing its marine renewables footprint, most recently teaming up with compatriot marine contractor Toyo Construction to evaluate potential collaboration on commercialising vessels for offshore wind power projects in Japan and overseas. In Japan, MOL is working with Edinburgh-based developer Flotation Energy to evaluate floating offshore wind opportunities and is also involved in alternative marine renewables through its investment in Wales-based Bombora Wave Power.