Abu Dhabi clean energy company Masdar is developing a 200-megawatt solar project in Armenia as it continues to expand its renewable energy portfolio into new markets.
The company submitted the winning bid to a tender issued by the Armenian government for the project, setting a final price of $0.0290 per kilowatt hours, Masdar said on Tuesday.
The total investment in the project, which also includes the construction of a new substation, is $174 million.
“By winning the tender for Armenia’s biggest utility-scale solar project, Masdar enters an exciting new phase in our collaboration with our partners at ANIF [the Armenian National Interest Fund] and with the Armenian government,” Masdar chief executive Mohamed Al Ramahi said.
The tender was part of a Joint Development Agreement signed between Masdar and ANIF in November 2019 to develop renewable energy projects with a total capacity of 400MW in Armenia. Discussions are currently under way for the remaining 200MW of projects in the country.
“This is a vital stage in Armenia’s clean energy journey. Low-cost solar energy will help power new industries, generate jobs and set the country on the path to a prosperous and truly sustainable future,” said Mr Al Ramahi.
Masdar, which is owned by Mubadala Investment Company, is a major player in the renewable energy sector around the world.
It currently operates in more than 30 countries and has a total renewable energy capacity of more than 11 gigawatts, representing a combined investment of about $20 billion.
It is also active in other countries in central and western Asia, including Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Azerbaijan.
“This is by far the largest single foreign investment in green energy in the region and the second-largest foreign direct investment in the history of modern Armenia,” ANIF chief executive David Papazian said.
“We are … proud to have Masdar as our partner in this most crucial phase of Armenia’s energy mix diversification and evolution to towards renewables.”
The project will be developed on a design, finance, build, own and operate basis and the project company will be 85 per cent owned by Masdar, with ANIF holding 15 per cent, according to Masdar.
The company aims to double its renewable energy capacity in the next five years as a number of countries look to develop new projects to lower emissions and protect the environment.
Efforts to limit global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels by 2050 could create about 122 million energy-related jobs, the International Renewable Energy Agency said in a recent report. The sector currently employs 58 million people.
Renewable energy alone will account for more than a third of all energy jobs, employing 43 million people worldwide, according to the agency.