Mas­dar wins $100 mil­lion so­lar project in Uzbek­istan

The National - News - - BUSINESS - Fareed Rah­man

Abu Dhabi’s Mas­dar will build a $100 mil­lion (Dh367.2m) so­lar power project in Uzbek­istan after it sub­mit­ted the low­est tar­iff, ac­cord­ing to the com­pany.

Mas­dar ten­dered 2.679 US cents per kilo­watt hour in the pro­gramme’s com­pet­i­tive auc­tion to de­velop the 100-megawatt util­ity-scale photo-voltaic so­lar plant, which will be lo­cated in the Navoi re­gion.

“Today’s sign­ing is a his­toric mile­stone for Uzbek­istan and its am­bi­tions to di­ver­sify its en­ergy mix,” said Mo­hamed Al Ramahi, chief ex­ec­u­tive of Mas­dar. “At Mas­dar, we have an im­pres­sive track record in help­ing emerg­ing mar­kets to un­lock the growth po­ten­tial of re­new­able en­ergy, not only in terms of at­tract­ing in­vest­ment into the mod­erni­sa­tion of their en­ergy in­fra­struc­ture but also their wider econ­omy,” he added.

As per the agree­ment, Mas­dar will de­sign, fi­nance, build and op­er­ate the coun­try’s first public-pri­vate part­ner­ship so­lar plant for 25 years. The con­struc­tion of the project will start in the sec­ond quar­ter of 2020, with com­mis­sion­ing sched­uled for the sec­ond quar­ter of 2021.

The In­ter­na­tional Fi­nance Cor­po­ra­tion helped Uzbek­istan’s Min­istry of In­vest­ments and For­eign Trade and the Min­istry of En­ergy to de­sign and ten­der the PPP, which at­tracted more than 40 bid­ders, un­der its Scal­ing So­lar pro­gramme.

“We will con­tinue to im­ple­ment such projects in a trans­par­ent and com­pet­i­tive man­ner to find the so­lu­tions, which are the most ac­cept­able for the ben­e­fit of Uzbek­istan,” said Sar­dor Umurza­kov, Min­is­ter of In­vest­ments and For­eign Trade.

Uzbek­istan, which bor­ders large oil and gas pro­duc­ers Kaza­khstan and Turk­menistan, has hy­dro­car­bon re­serves but is not a mas­sive op­er­a­tor in the sec­tor. The coun­try has an am­bi­tious plan to de­velop 5 gi­gawatts of re­new­able en­ergy by 2030 to di­ver­sify its power mix, with the IFC’s Scal­ing So­lar scheme ex­pected to help in­stall at least 1GW of ca­pac­ity.

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