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Abu Dhabi-based Renewable energy firm Masdar revealed that construction has commenced on four PV plants in the Pacific island countries of Kiribati, Fiji, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.

The projects, financed by the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development’s US$50 million UAE-Pacific Partnership Fund, will provide a total generation capacity of 1.8MW while also providing fuel savings worth around US$2 million per year. All four plants are expected to be completed by the second half of 2015.

Ahmad Belhoul, CEO of Masdar, said: “Access to clean energy is a pathway toward economic and social development. For Pacific islands, which rely on imported fuel for electricity generation, renewable energy provides a viable alternative. In fact, wind and solar power projects deliver immediate savings, while underpinning long-term energy security.”

This is not the first time that Masdar has made inroads on the Pacific islands, as the company unveiled the commissioned La'a Lahi "Big Sun" solar plant in Tonga in November 2013 while later developing Samoa’s first wind farm — commissioned in August 2014.