Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (Dewa) confirmed on 23 September that contracts for the 100MW second phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum Solar Park will be awarded by the end of the year.

The park will use photovoltaic (PV) solar technology, as the 13MW first phase did, and bids from the 24 prequalified companies are due in on 23 October. Dewa CEO Saeed Mohammed al-Tayer said that if current trends with solar pricing continue, within five years, its cost will compete with gas.

A source close to Dubai’s solar plans said that once the award has been made, concentrated solar power (CSP) would follow. Dubai plans to eventually expand its solar capabilities to 1,000MW, with much of that supplied using CSP technology.

This week, Dewa also awarded a AED250m ($68m) contract to an unnamed “international company” for the 400kV substation that will connect the second phase of the solar park to the national grid. The 100MW phase of the project is due to come on stream in the second quarter of 2017. A further 100MW third phase using PV technology will then be developed, followed by a combination of CSP and PV to take capacity to 1GW.

Dubai’s stated policy is for 1 per cent of its power generation to come from renewable energy by 2020, with that figure increasing to 5 per cent by 2030.