Dubai Opens 800 MW Solar Power Tender

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The Dubai Electricity and Water Authority has officially opened tender for the third phase of its iconic solar power park.

Tender for the 800 MW third phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park will remain open until 29 September 2015 and is the largest issued so far for the planned 3 GW solar power park. The additional 800 MW capacity is expected to be commissioned by 2018.

The first phase of the solar park involved the installation of 13 MW worth of capacity, and through the second phase tender, 200 MW capacity was famously auctioned to Saudi Arabia’s ACWA Power at record-low average tariff of 5.84¢/kWh. In March, ACWA Power announced that it had secured a debt financing loan worth $344 million for the project. The 27-year loan will be provided by Abu Dhabi’s First Gulf Bank and 2 Saudi banks — the National Commercial Bank and the Samba Financial Group. Paddy Padmanathan, Chief Executive Officer, ACWA Power announced at the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week 2015 that the company would secure debt financing at a low interest rate of just 4%.

The initial installed capacity target for the solar power park was set at 1 GW by 2019. However, earlier this year the authority announced that it would boost the park’s capacity to 3 GW by 2030 with a total estimated investment of $3 billion.

The solar power park is central to the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority’s target to source 7% of Dubai’s total power output from renewable energy sources by 2020, and 15% by 2030. The United Arab Emirates plan to source at least 24% of its total electricity demand from ‘clean energy’ sources like renewable energy and nuclear power.

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