Saudi Arabia takes utility-scale solar debut to finish line

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
Reddit
Email
The Sakaka plant in Al Jouf region, Saudi Arabia. Source: ACWA Power

Saudi Arabia has connected its first utility-scale renewable energy project to the grid, a 300MW solar project developed by local energy developer ACWA Power in the northern Al Jouf region.

The project, which is currently in a pilot phase, will reach full commercial operations before the end of 2019, according to the Saudi developer.

This article requires Premium SubscriptionBasic (FREE) Subscription

Unlock unlimited access for 12 whole months of distinctive global analysis

Photovoltaics International is now included.

  • Regular insight and analysis of the industry’s biggest developments
  • In-depth interviews with the industry’s leading figures
  • Unlimited digital access to the PV Tech Power journal catalogue
  • Unlimited digital access to the Photovoltaics International journal catalogue
  • Access to more than 1,000 technical papers
  • Discounts on Solar Media’s portfolio of events, in-person and virtual

Or continue reading this article for free

The SAR 1.2 billion (US$320 million) Sakaka plant was awarded to an ACWA Power-led consortium at a world record tariff of 8.781 halalas/kWh (US$2.34/kWh) in October 2017, despite Masdar and EDF Energies Nouvelles putting in an even lower bid.

ACWA Power and contractor AlGihaz closed financing for the SAR1.2 billion (US$320 million) project in November 2018.

The plant was financed through limited recourse ring-fenced project financing, with the entire debt fully underwritten by Natixis. Arab National Bank provided an equity bridge loan for the transaction.

A 25-year power purchase agreement (PPA) has been signed with offtaker Saudi Power Procurement Company (SPPC).

According to ACWA, the project was built by an entirely Saudi workforce, with no reported injuries or accidents.

It is the inaugural project of the National Renewable Energy Program, managed by the Kingdom's Renewable Energy Project Development Office (REPDO).

The state is poised to hold the second round of that program in the coming months. A spokesperson from REPDO told PV Tech in an email on Tuesday that “the RFP deadline for round two projects has been extended to January.”

Read Next

Subscribe to Newsletter

Upcoming Events

Solar Media Events
February 28, 2024
Seattle, USA
Solar Media Events, Industry Events
March 12, 2024
Frankfurt, Germany
Upcoming Webinars
March 13, 2024
9am EDT / 1pm GMT / 2pm CET
Solar Media Events
March 19, 2024
Texas, USA