Saudi Arabia’s largest renewable energy project, the 2.6 GW Al Shuaibah solar power plant, is moving ahead after completing financing led by the National Development Fund on August 20.
New Major Financing for Renewable Energy in Saudi Arabia
The financing of 8.3 billion Riyals ($2.2 billion) included 1.7 billion Riyals from the National Infrastructure Fund. His first financing of an Aramco-sponsored project.
The project is being developed by a joint venture between Saudi Aramco, the Badeel Water and Power Company and ACWA Power. It is scheduled to begin commercial operations in 2025, according to the press release. Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, the Public Investment Fund, owns Badeel and 44% of ACWA Power.
The country has 13 renewable energy projects under development, with a collective capacity of 11.3 GW. Badeel is developing a total of five projects with a total capacity of 8 GW and an investment of over $6 billion. Saudi Arabia has stepped up its bidding activities. In order to add more renewable energy capacity to its power grid. As part of its ambitions to achieve carbon neutrality by 2060.
Saudi Arabia: Solar Energy Agreements Signed for 4.55 GW of Capacity
In May, Water and Electricity Holding Co (Badeel) and ACWA Power signed power purchase agreements with Saudi Power Procurement Co. for three large-scale solar projects with a combined capacity of 4.55 GW. The Ar Rass 2, Saad 2 and Al Kahfah projects have planned capacities of 2.0 GW, 1.1 GW and 1.4 GW, respectively. And a combined value of 12.2 billion riyals.
Financial close of the projects is scheduled for the third quarter of 2023. Saudi Arabia is unlikely to meet its renewable energy targets for this year. With less than 3 GW of operational projects, said S&P Global Commodity Insights in an August report. The King Salman Renewable Energy Initiative, part of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030, sets renewable targets of 27.3 GW (20 GW solar PV and 7 GW wind) by 2023, he noted.
The 2020 target has also been missed, he said. The next target is 58.7 GW (40 GW solar PV, 16 GW wind and 2.7 GW CSP) by 2030.