Emirates Water and Electricity Company PJSC (EWEC), the UAE’s leading procurer of water and electricity, has issued a tender for the construction and development of a new 2,000 MW solar photovoltaic (PV) power project to be located at Al Dhafra, Abu Dhabi. The new project forms part of a series of projects approved by the higher Committee for the Water and Electricity Sector in Abu Dhabi.
Once completed, the project site will cover an area of approximately 20 km², almost doubling the capacity of the current largest operational single-site solar PV plant in the world, Noor Abu Dhabi. The new project is expected to commence commercial operations during the first quarter of 2022, upon which it would take Abu Dhabi solar capacity to 3,200 MW.
This follows the receipt by EWEC earlier this year of 48 Expression of Interests from leading international and local developers. In line with the successful Independent Water and Power Producer program launched by the Abu Dhabi government in 1998, successful bidders would hold a 40 per cent equity participation in the project, with the remaining stake held by local entities.
Commenting on the announcement, Othman Al Ali, CEO of EWEC, said: “The new solar project in Al Dhafra marks yet another milestone in EWEC’s commitment to the UAE Energy Strategy 2050, which aims to increase the contribution of clean energy as part the country’s overall energy mix. The strong interest expressed so far illustrates the attractive business model and reaffirms the strong case for investment in the UAE’s renewable energy sector.”