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Saudi Arabia Announces 7 Renewable Energy Projects Worth $1.5 Bn

Saudi Arabia Announces 7 Renewable Energy Projects Worth $1.5 Bn

Tuesday, 12 March, 2019 - 08:30
Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih tours the Sakaka plant. (SPA)
Al-Jawf - Asharq al-Awsat
Saudi Arabia is ready to launch its second phase of the renewable energy program with seven solar photovoltaic energy projects that would generate 1.52 gigawatts and direct investments worth $1.51 billion.

The Renewable Energy Project Development Office (REPDO) of Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Energy announced that the new announcement follows the previous successful one where 256 companies, including 100 local ones, expressed interests in taking part in those projects.

Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih reported that qualified companies have to show a track record and a portfolio of renewable energy projects, depending on the size of each project.

International bidders for specific projects should use local management expertise to help Saudi companies to acquire the necessary experience, which will prepare them in the future to proceed with their own projects and thus support and stimulate the entire ecosystem.

The Kingdom aims to create over the next decade a global hub of renewable energy capability upwards of 200 GW, spanning the entire value chain from local manufacturing to project development, domestically and abroad, according to REPDO.

The projects would generate energy that can serve 226,500 households and create more than 4,500 job opportunities during construction, operations and maintenance. The projects include Qurrayat (200 MW), Madinah (50 MW), Rafha (45 MW), Alfaisaliah (600 MW), Rabigh (300 MW), Jeddah (300 MW) and Mahad Duhab (20 MW).

Meanwhile, Falih visited Monday the Sakaka solar power project, the first in a series of renewable energy projects.

ACWA Power chairman Mohammed Abonayyan said that the Sakaka project is committed to providing training opportunities for youth through the Higher Institute of Water and Electricity Technologies in Rabigh and create job opportunities for the al-Jawf residents to bolster their social and economic status and develop their skills and experience.

The 300 MW Sakaka IPP photovoltaic solar project is the first ever utility scale renewable energy project under the National Renewable Energy Program of Saudi Arabia.

REPDO awarded ACWA Power the contract at a world record-breaking tariff of 2.3417/kWh. The plant will cover an area of 6 Km2 at al-Jawf. With an investment of $302 million, this project the first of many under the National Renewable Energy Program, which aims to produce 9.5GW of renewable energy by 2023.

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