"a skilled negotiator and an expert in project finance, particularly power finance." 
Chambers Asia Pacific (2019)

Overview

Benjamin Thompson is a partner in Mayer Brown's Singapore office and is a member of the Global Projects group. Based in Asia since 2004, he has many years of experience in project financings throughout the region and has advised both sponsors and lenders on a number of the highest profile and award-winning power projects, including the Myingyan IPP (Myanmar's first internationally tendered power project), the Nam Ngiep 1 and Nam Ngum 3 hydropower projects in Laos PDR and the Nong Saeng and Gulf U-Thai IPP projects in Thailand.

Ben has a particular focus on renewables (including hydro, wind and solar) as well as extensive experience in advising MLA and DFI lenders on projects, including ADB, IFC, AIIB, DEG and others. 

Experience

Renewables

  • Advising ADB in relation to the financing of the 144MW Lotus wind farm in Vietnam.
  • Advising sponsors, Spectra Engineers Limited and Shunfeng Investment Limited, in relation to the project financing of a 35MW solar power plant in Paturia, Manigoni, Bangladesh by ADB and DEG.
  • Advising DEG and the other senior lenders on the project financing of the 50MW Padma Solar Farm Project, Bangladesh.
  • Advising the international and Myanmar sponsors on all aspects of the development of the Shweli 3 671 MW hydropower project in Myanmar.
  • Advising the international sponsors on all aspects of the development of the Deedoke run-of-river 66MW hydropower project in Myanmar, which (if completed on schedule) would be the country's first internationally developed hydro-IPP selling exclusively into the Myanmar market.
  • Advised an international investor on its proposed investment into a greenfield solar power project in Myanmar.
  • Advised a confidential client in relation to the development of a potential hydropower project in Nepal.
  • Advised the lenders on the Nam Ngum 3 hydropower project in Laos PDR.
  • Advised the sponsors on the Nam Ngiep 1 hydropower project in Laos PDR.
  • Advised the lenders on the EGCO Theppana wind farm project in Thailand.
  • Advised the lenders on the EGCO Solarco solar power project in Thailand.
  • Advised the lenders on the refinancing and extension of the Theun-Hinboun power project in Laos PDR in 2008 and subsequent DFI tranche in 2009 (Renewables Deal of the Year 2008 by Project Finance Magazine).
  • Advised an international multilateral institution on the 201MW Gansu Guazhou Ganhekou No. 8 Wind Farm in Gansu Province, western China - (Asia Pacific Renewables Deal of the Year 2010 by Project Finance Magazine).
  • Advised the lenders on National Power's proposed biomass project in Thailand.
  • Advised the lenders on all ongoing post-closing matters on Nam Theun 2 hydropower project in Laos PDR.
  • Advised the sponsors on a IPP bid in Thailand.
  • Advised an international multilateral institution on the PPA for the NED solar power project in Thailand.

Additional power experience

  • Advising the lenders in relation to the development and financing of the 1,390 MW Mee Lin Gyaing LNG-to-power project in Myanmar.
  • Advising a confidential client in relation to the development of a 3GW LNG-to-power project in Vietnam
  • Advised Mitsui O.S.K. Lines on its participation in the Jawa 1 LNG-to-power project in Indonesia, including advising on the due diligence, project documents and the project finance agreements (Asia Pacific Power Deal of the Year 2019 by Project Finance International).
  • Advising the sponsors on an LNG-to-power FSRU and powership project in Vietnam.
  • Advised the lenders (including IFC, ADB and AIIB) on the financing of the 225MW combined-cycle gas-fired power project in Myingyan, Myanmar's first internationally tendered power project.
  • Advising the sponsors on the development and financing of the Kyaukse 150MW power plant in Myanmar, including the PPA and financing.
  • Advising on all aspects of the development of a 300MW temporary power plant in Yangon, including the negotiation of the PPA and other key project documents for the transaction.
  • Advised Marubeni Corporation on its indirect acquisition of a 20 percent stake in a Cambodia-based power generation and transmission business owned and operated by Malaysia's Leader Group.
  • Advised the sponsors on all aspects of the development and financing of the Ahlone 121MW combined-cycle gas-fired power project in Yangon, Myanmar.
  • Advised the international sponsors on the proposed development and financing of the Kanbauk 200MW gas-fired power project.

Other Infrastructure

  • Advised ADB and IFC on US$300 million financing to Ooredoo Myanmar for the expansion of its telecommunications network in Myanmar (Debt Market Deal of the Year at the Asian Legal Business SE Asia Law Awards 2016 and one of Asian-MENA Counsel's Deals of the Year 2016).
  • Advised the lenders, led by IFC, on the US$830 million PAU Ammonia Project in Sulawesi, Indonesia.
  • Advised CAT Financial as lender in connection with a mining equipment lease financing for PT Machinery & Equipment (aka Phu Thai Leasing) for the development of the Dong Bac coal mine in Vietnam.

Education

Oxford Institute of Legal Practice, LPC

University of Glasgow, LLB, with honors

Admissions

  • England and Wales
  • Leading Individual, Projects & Infrastructure: International (Singapore) – Chambers Global (2015-2021)
  • Expert based aboard (Singapore), General Business Law (Myanmar) – Chambers Global (2016-2021)
  • Foreign Expert (Myanmar), Projects & Energy (Singapore) – Chambers Global (2016-2021)
  • Leading Individual, General Business Law (International Firms), Myanmar – Chambers Asia Pacific (2017-2021)
  • Leading Individual, Projects & Infrastructure: International, Singapore – Chambers Asia Pacific (2017-2021)
  • Leading Individual - Foreign Desks, Myanmar – The Legal 500 Asia Pacific (2018-2021)
  • Highly Regarded - Energy and Infrastructure, Singapore – IFLR1000 (2020)
  • Highly Regarded - Project Development, Myanmar – IFLR1000 (2021)
  • Highly Regarded - Project Development, Singapore – IFLR1000 (2020, 2021)
  • Highly Regarded - Banking, Myanmar – IFLR1000 (2021)
  • Highly Regarded - Banking, Singapore – IFLR1000 (2020, 2021)
  • Highly Regarded - Project Finance, Myanmar – IFLR1000 (2021)
  • Highly Regarded - Project Finance, Singapore – IFLR1000 (2020, 2021)
  • Rising Star - Energy and Infrastructure, Singapore – IFLR1000 (2015-2019)
  • Rising Star - Banking, Singapore – IFLR1000 (2015-2019)
  • Rising Star - Project Finance, Singapore – IFLR1000 (2015-2019)
  • "[Benjamin] is a real star, with a great focus on Myanmar" – Chambers Asia Pacific (2016)
  • ""ahead of the curve" for his work in Myanmar" – Chambers Asia Pacific (2016)
  • "… the most creditable and experienced lawyer in the field of Lao-Thai hydro IPPs" – IFLR1000 (2014)
  • "… experienced in project financing and development" – Chambers Asia Pacific (2014)
  • Rising Star - for finance work in the power sector – IFLR Asia Pacific Energy & Infrastructure Guide (2014)
  • Foreign Expert (Thailand), Projects & Energy (Singapore) – Chambers Global (2014-2015)
  • Expert based aboard (Singapore), Projects (Thailand) – Chambers Global (2014-2015)
  • Expert based abroad (Singapore), Projects (Thailand) – Chambers Asia Pacific (2014)
  • Rising Star - Banking & Finance, Singapore – IFLR1000 (2013, 2014)
  • "detail-oriented and experienced" – The Legal 500 (2013)
  • "won praise from both clients and other lawyers for his diligence and keen attention to detail" – Chambers Asia Pacific (2013)