The World’s Largest Solar Park validated


In 2019, a tender had been issued by the Emirates Water and Electricity Company (EWEC). It was won by the consortium that offered one of the most competitive tariffs in the world for solar energy. Initially set at 1.11 euro/kWh, the tariff was further improved to 1.08 euro/kWh. This has been achieved through improved coverage and financing costs.

Un unprecedented cooperation for the most solar park in the world

Four companies needed to finance the project

EDF Renewables and Jinko Power HK has just finalized the financing of the project. At their side are. This operation was carried out with TAQA Group and Masdar, Emirati shareholders. They are leaders in the electricity and renewable energy markets in the emirate. This project is a public-private partnership (PPP). EDF Renewables and Jinko Power each hold a 20% stake. The remaining 60% is owned by TAQA Group and Masdar. On July 23, 2020, the four partners signed the 30-year power sales agreement (PPA).

Seven banks leveraged

The $1 billion financial transaction was completed in project finance by BNP Paribas. BNP Paris is acting as lead manager for the majority of the transaction. But it is not the only bank involved. Bank of China, Crédit Agricole, HSBC, MUFG, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation and Standard Chartered are acting as mandated arrangers.

Bruno Bensasson, Chairman and CEO of EDF Renewables, congratulates this large-scale partnership:

“We are putting all our expertise to work on this new generation power plant in Abu Dhabi. The securing of financing jointly with our partners and the financial community is a major step in the realization of this project.”

The Al Dhafra power plant, the power plant of all superlatives

This is the capacity of the plant. Located in the Al Dhafra region, 35 kilometers south of Abu Dhabi city, it will be the most powerful in the world. When it is commissioned in 2022, it will be able to supply 160,000 homes with electricity each year.

State-of-the-art technology

It will also be the first power plant of this scale to deploy bifacial modules. They capture solar radiation from both sides of the photovoltaic modules and benefit from the reflection of the light. This technique increases the energy efficiency of the installation. Eventually the plant will be equipped with more than 4 million photovoltaic modules. It will cover a desert climate area of about 20 square kilometers.

This new solar park will allow the UAE to diversify its energy mix. The country is seeking to free itself from hydrocarbons by focusing on nuclear and solar energy. By 2050, the emirate aims to generate up to 44% of its energy from clean sources.

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