China is increasing its influence in the energy sector in Latin America, with Chile, Brazil, and Peru being the countries where its presence is concentrated in the power distribution market. According to data from Boston University, since 2000, Chinese development banks have financed nearly $10 billion in power generation and distribution projects in the region. This has sparked the interest of Chinese companies to operate in Latin America.
China Southern Power Grid recently acquired Enel Peru’s distribution business for $2.9 billion, becoming one of the major players in the electric market in Lima, along with China Yangtze Power International, with a combined market share of over 50%. In addition to Peru, China is also considering Colombia, where a delegation from China Yangtze Power International visited the country to explore opportunities in the clean energy market. China has invested around $2 billion in Colombia until 2021, participating in infrastructure and renewable energy projects.
In Chile, the Chinese company State Grid acquired Chilquinta Energía in 2019 and Naturgy in 2020, consolidating its position in the power distribution market. Although Enel Distribución leads in terms of sales, State Grid controls 56% of the market. In Brazil, China Southern Power Grid International acquired a 28% stake in the transmission company Transelec in 2018, and China Three Gorges Corporation has assets in hydroelectric power plants and wind farms in Ecuador, Bolivia, Chile, and Brazil. Chinese influence extends to both power generation, and energy transmission and distribution in the region.
Sánchez, D. (2023, Abril 12). Chile, Brasil y Perú concentran La Presencia de China en el mercado de distribución eléctrica