World’s biggest solar power plant successfully secures funding: TAQA

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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Al Dhafra Solar PV IPP
Representational Image

The funding for the Al Dhafra Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Independent Power Producer (IPP) project has been successfully closed. The project developed by Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA) along with Masdar, EDF Renewables and JinkoPower received financing from seven international banks.

The record-breaking Al Dhafra Solar PV IPP, located nearly 35 kilometers from Abu Dhabi city with a capacity of 2 gigawatts (GW), will supply power to Emirates Water and Electricity Company (EWEC). 

Once commenced its operations, the project will be the world’s largest single-site solar power plant, with nearly 4 million solar panels to generate electricity for approximately 160,000 homes across the UAE.

Earlier this year, the bidding for the project led to one of the most competitive tariffs for solar power, which was set at $1.35/kWh and upon financial closing, it was further brought down to $1.32/kWh. TAQA will have 40 percent ownership in the project and the remaining partners including Masdar, EDF Renewables and JinkoPower will have a 20 percent stake each.

Jasim Husain Thabet
Jasim Husain Thabet
Group CEO & MD

“The financial closing marks the beginning of an important chapter for this IPP project, for TAQA Group and the UAE as we continue to deliver on our bold clean energy ambitions while demonstrating the commercial and operational viability of utility-scale single-site solar projects.”

The Al Dhafra Solar PV IPP will deploy the latest in crystalline, bifacial solar technology, which will allow the plant to offer more efficient electricity by capturing solar irradiation from both the front and backside of the panel. The project is estimated to cut Abu Dhabi’s CO2 emissions by more than 2.4 million metric tons per year which are equivalent to removing around 470,000 cars from the road.

“Reaching the financial close for a project of this scale and efficiency marks another milestone in EWEC’s commitment to developing the UAE’s renewable energy sector,” said Othman Al Ali, Chief Executive Officer of EWEC.