A consortium led by Italy’s Enel Green Power has been selected as preferred bidder for the 850MW independent power producer (IPP) wind programme in Morocco.

After evaluating proposals from five bidders, Morocco’s Office National de l’Electricite et de l’Eau Potable (ONEE) selected the consortium of Enel Green, the local Nareva Holding and Germany’s Siemens to develop five wind farms with a total capacity of 850MW. The developer consortium is expected to spend $1.1bn to develop the wind power facilities.

The wind farms will be located at the following five sites:

  • Tangier 2 (Tangier; 100MW)
  • Tiskrad (Laayoune; 300MW)
  • Boujdour (Boujdour; 100MW)
  • Midelt (Midelt; 150MW)
  • Jbel Lahdid (Essaouira; 200MW)

The project will be developed under a build-own-operate-transfer (BOOT) contract, with the preferred bidder expected to sign a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with ONEE.

ONEE had received technical and commercial bids from the five bidders for the five wind farms on 30 October 2015.

The 850MW project is the second phase of Morocco’s Integrated Programme for Wind Energy, launched in 2010. The first phase comprises a 150MW wind farm at Taza, which is due to be commissioned in 2017.

Morocco has set a target of 42 per cent of power generation to come from renewable energy sources by 2020. This is scheduled to include a total wind power capacity of about 2,000MW.

Consortium member Siemens has announced it is establishing a factory in Morocco to manufacture rotor blades for onshore wind turbines. The company said construction is to commence as early as the spring of 2016, with the factory aiming to become operational within a year’s time.

The investment is estimated to cost €100m ($110m) and wil create up to 700 jobs. The factory will be catering to what Markus Tacke, CEO of the Siemens Wind Power and Renewables Division, describes as the growing onshore wind power markets in Africa, the Middle East and Europe.