China General Nuclear Power Corp, one of the country’s largest nuclear power companies, has signed an agreement with Italian energy giant Enel for a 100 percent equity purchase of its Gamma new energy project in Brazil, a sign that CGN is entering the clean energy market in South America.

The Gamma project, located in the northeastern part of Brazil, has a total installed capacity of 540MW, including two solar energy projects totalling 450MW and one 90MW wind power project, said the company.

With another clean energy project to be agreed soon, which the company has not revealed the details of so far, CGN is expected to become the fifth-largest clean energy power generator in Brazil, it said.

The company will further expand its presence in South America including Mexico, Argentina and Chile in the future, to further facilitate the clean energy industry in the region, said He Yu, chairman of CGN.

According to He, the company currently sees its business abroad expanding to more than 20 countries, with overseas business accounting for 18 percent of the company’s total assets.

New energy has always been the major business for CGN, including wind power, solar power and biomass. Since 2010, the company has started expanding its clean energy business abroad in countries like France, South Korea, Egypt and countries in Southeast Asia. It has become the biggest independent power generator in Malaysia and Egypt and the fifth-biggest clean energy operator in France, it said.

An analyst said the agreement is a milestone for the company as it has entered the Brazilian clean energy market while it is also in accordance with the trend that Chinese power producers are very keen to develop clean energy at home and abroad.

“With more advanced solutions, we expect companies like CGN New Energy will continue to seek more advanced new energy cooperation abroad in the coming years,” said Joseph Jacobelli, an independent energy analyst and Asia-Pacific CEO of clean energy producer Joule Power.

Chinese clean energy companies are likely to continue expanding abroad, as many companies are stepping up their participation in overseas markets, and investing in assets abroad buoyed by the China-led Belt and Road Initiative, he said.

According to Jacobelli, China has risen from a nuclear energy novice to being a world leader in nuclear plant development after years of development, and is expected to become a major supplier on the global stage.