UK developer sets up Turkey base

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UK-based pureplay developer Hive Energy has opened a new regional headquarters in Turkey, continuing its international expansion.

Hive said the new office, located in Turkey’s capital Ankara, marks the “next step” in a growth strategy and has targeted a portfolio of 50MW in Turkey to capitalise on the country’s nascent solar boom.

It will become the second new office established by Hive in as many months, following on from the company’s move into the UAE with an office in Dubai.

Tolga Metin will head up Hive’s team in Turkey and Giles Redpath, chief executive at Hive Energy, said the country would be the “next exciting opportunity for solar in Europe”.

“To date there has been very limited solar PV deployment and investment in the country. Turkey has a high performing economy and although current electricity consumption per capita is 40% lower than the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development average this demand is forecast to develop significantly in the coming years and Hive Energy are [sic] poised to support this growth,” Redpath added.

Hive’s announcement comes just days after the UK's Department of Energy and Climate Change’s feed-in tariff consultation closed and amidst considerable uncertainty over the government’s direction on renewable energy subsidies. Proposed cuts of up to 87% are on the table.

The Turkish government, on the other hand, recently announced plans to build out at least 3GW of solar PV by 2023. Hive says the 10-year power purchase agreements on offer at US$0.133/kWh are now “more economically viable” to solar developers due to the falling price of solar panels.

Hive is however not alone in targeting Turkey. Barnsley-based Solar Europa announced in July that a contract awarded to it as part of a trade mission headed by Prime Minister David Cameron to secure development agreements for up to 4GW of solar was “back on track”, however it has yet to release any further details, nor has an announcement been forthcoming.

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