Masdar expands presence in Uzbekistan with 457MW solar tender win

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A solar project from Masdar in Mauritania. Image: Masdar.

Abu Dhabi-based Masdar has won a tender to build a 457MW solar plant in Uzbekistan, taking the developer’s awarded PV capacity through the country’s tenders to almost 1GW.

Uzbekistan’s energy ministry said 54 international companies originally expressed interest in the Sherabad project, with Masdar posting the lowest tariff of US$0.018045/kWh among the five shortlisted candidates. The next lowest bid was 20% higher at US$0.021621/kWh.

Set to be developed in the Surkhandarya region, the project also includes the construction of a 220kV substation and a 52km transmission line.

The Sherabad project is part of a wider programme being implemented with support from the Asian Development Bank to construct solar plants in Uzbekistan with a total capacity of 1GW, as the country aims to reach 5GW of installed solar by 2030. In addition to lowering energy costs, the programme will decrease Uzbekistan’s dependence on fossil fuels and reduce CO2 emissions.

“We are very happy to join the international community of solar power generators,” said energy minister Alisher Sultanov.

The news comes two weeks after Masdar secured the rights to develop two PV plants in Uzbekistan’s Samarkand and Jizzakh regions that will have a combined capacity of 440MW. The company’s lowest bid in that public-private partnership tender was US$0.0179/kWh.

That win builds on the 100MW solar project the developer was awarded in Uzbekistan’s first solar tender in 2019.

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