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Aquila Capital unveils 2-billion-euro renewable investment in Spain, Portugal

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FILE PHOTO: Two people walk near an electricity pylon and a group of wind turbines, in Barranco de Tirajana

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Aquila Capital on Wednesday unveiled a spending push of more than 2 billion euros ($1.98 billion) to fund solar and wind projects in Spain and Portugal, in what marks a major expansion at one of Europe's largest private renewables investors.

The funding covers 50 projects of Aquila Clean Energy EMEA, Aquila's European cleantech arm, mostly photovoltaics and onshore wind with a total generation capacity of 2.6 gigawatts (GW), enough to power 1.4 million households a year.

More than half of the investment will come from Aquila, while the European Investment Bank (EIB) will provide a 400 million euro credit line, in what EIB Vice President Ricardo Mourinho Felix said was a "landmark transaction".

A group of banks, including NatWest, German state lender KfW, Santander, BNP Paribas, ING, Intesa SanPaolo and Banco Sabadell will account for the remaining 600 million euros.

"This transaction constitutes the largest financing in the history of Aquila Clean Energy and Aquila Capital," Susanne Wermter, CEO of Aquila Clean Energy EMEA, said.

Aquila Capital manages 14 billion euros of assets worldwide and has a cleantech portfolio of more than 8.2 GW that, apart from wind and solar, also includes hydroelectric power and battery storage.

($1 = 1.0098 euros)

(Reporting by Christoph Steitz; Editing by Bernadette Baum)