German PV equipment manufacturer Centrotherm has won the bidding to develop a major new solar plant in Algeria. Despite reports to contrary, Centrotherm has yet to sign a contract with the Algerian Government for the new system, which will be located 30km east of the capital city, Algiers.
“The [bid] price we obtained from Centrotherm is very competitive and it is almost at the same level of the price in China,” said Nouredine Bouterfa, the Algerian Government’s head of state-owned power utility.
Earlier this week, reports surfaced that Centrotherm had signed a DZD29.8-billion (US$408 million) contract for the plant and that it was scheduled to be completed in 2013. However, the Baden-Württemberg-based firm claims contractual negotiations are still ongoing and no details about finances or the plant itself have been finalised.
The solar system is the latest step by Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s government to help Algeria achieve its ambitious goal of increasing its renewable energy capacity to 12GW by 2030. Study grants worth DZD2 billion (US$27.6 million), renewable electricity subsidies of DZD12 billion (US$165 million) and around DZD50 billion (US$686 million) of preferential loans have also been announced.