Abu Dhabi’s flagship renewable energy company Masdar has pledged to strengthen its support for Saudi Arabia’s clean energy objectives, with the opening of a new dedicated office in the Kingdom.
Masdar, one of the world’s fastest-growing renewable energy companies, will also participate with partners in the upcoming Round 4 tender announced by the Saudi Power Procurement Co. (SPPC) for wind and solar projects with a combined capacity of 3.3 gigawatts (GW).
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The inauguration of the office, located in the capital Riyadh, was attended by Sheikh Nahyan bin Saif Al Nahyan, UAE Ambassador to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, along with representatives from Masdar partners, Saudi government officials, and industry leaders.
Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi, Chief Executive Officer of Masdar was also present, along with other Masdar executives, who were also participating in the Future Investment Initiative (FII) conference in Riyadh.
Sheikh Nahyan bin Saif Al Nahyan, UAE Ambassador to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, said, “This occasion reflects the close ties that unite our two countries, as well as the strength of the strategic relations between the UAE and Saudi Arabia. These ties are based on a solid foundation supported by the leadership of both nations and work to achieve shared developmental goals for a more prosperous future and increased Emirati-Saudi integration in various fields.”
“We are committed as countries and peoples to cooperating in this regard, not only for the benefit of our countries but also for the region and world at large. The UAE and Saudi Arabia remain keen to strengthen strategic cooperation and leverage joint resources and capabilities,” Al Nahyan said.
Masdar CEO Al Ramahi affirmed that the company “is actively committed to supporting Saudi Arabia’s efforts to reach net zero, and the Kingdom represents a key strategic market where we have established a proven track record in developing clean energy projects.”
This new office, he said will support Masdar’s ongoing growth and expansion in the Kingdom, and it will better enable us to help diversify Saudi Arabia’s energy mix and meet the ambitious renewable energy targets outlined in Vision 2030.
“We look forward to working with our partners to continue to deliver world-class clean energy projects in Saudi,” the CEO said.
“Establishing a physical will help ensure we are aligned with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030,” said Abdulaziz Omar Al Mubarak, General Manager of Masdar in Saudi Arabia.
“The Saudi office will not only look over our existing assets, it will also play a key role in the development of future pipeline projects here,” Al Mubarak said.
Wind power plants
The SPPC’s Round 4 tender will be for three wind power plants with a combined capacity of 1.8 GW, and two solar parks totalling 1.5 GW, as part of the country’s National Renewable Energy Program.
Saudi Arabia is planning to generate 50 percent of its electricity from clean sources by the end of this decade, targeting 58.7 GW coming from renewable sources. The world’s biggest oil exporter has also pledged to cut its carbon emissions to net zero by 2060, with plans to invest more than $180 billion to reach that goal.
Masdar is already contributing to Saudi Arabia’s clean energy objectives, with the 400-megawatt (MW) Dumat Al Jandal Wind Farm –- the Kingdom’s first and the largest in the Middle East -– having begun electricity production last year.
Developed by a consortium of Masdar and EDF Renewables with Nesma Company, Dumat Al Jandal will generate enough clean energy to power 70,000 Saudi homes while displacing 988,000 tonnes of CO₂ per year once fully operational.
Masdar is also developing the 300-MW South Jeddah Noor Solar Photovoltaic Plant, through a consortium led by Masdar with EDF Renewables and Nesma Company as partners.
The consortium signed a 25-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with SPPC last year to design, finance, build, and operate the plant, which will be located in Third Jeddah Industrial City, 50 km south-east of Jeddah.
Under its Vision 2030 objectives, Saudi Arabia is also looking to explore developing the potential of the commercial and industrial (C&I) sector for solar power generation. Accordingly, Masdar sees considerable potential to target this segment through Emerge, the joint venture it established with EDF to collaborate on opportunities in distributed solar generation, energy efficiency and street lighting in the UAE and Saudi Arabia.
Emerge is actively developing multiple off-grid and on-grid projects, which will be streamlined once approved by the Saudi Water and Electricity Regulatory Authority (WERA).
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