EXCLUSIVE: Saudi Arabia extends deadline for 300MW solar project

20 August 2017

Sakaka solar project is first scheme under National Renewable Energy Programme

Saudi Arabia’s Renewable Energy Project Development Office (Repdo), which is part of the Ministry of Energy, Industry & Mineral Resources, has extended the bid submission date for the planned 300MW photovoltaic (PV) solar project at Sakaka.

Prequalified developers now have until 2 October 2017 to submit proposals for the planned 300MW project. The previous submission date was 11 September.

Repdo is planning to appoint shortlisted bidders by 13 November and sign the power purchase agreement (PPA) by 15 January 2018. A final target date for financial close has been set for 28 February 2018, with the client aiming for the project to have been commissioned by 31 August 2019.

MEED recently reported that 27 companies had been prequalified to participate in the bidding process for the 300MW solar project, is part of the first round of procurement for the country’s National Renewable Energy Programme (NREP).

Repdo issued prequalification documents on 20 February and received responses on 20 March. A special purpose vehicle, project company, will be formed for each project and will be 100 per cent owned by the successful bidder.

Under the 700MW first round, a 300MW PV solar project will be developed at a site in Sakaka in the Al-Jouf province and a 400MW wind project will be developed at a site in Dumat al-Jandal. The projects will be developed under the independent power producer (IPP) model.

MEED reported in January that the ministry was going to push ahead with the initial 700MW of the first 3.45GW of renewable energy projects planned by 2020 in the first quarter of 2017. The NREP sets out a target for 3.45GW of renewable energy to be developed by 2020 under the National Transformation Plan (NTP), and for 9.5GW of renewable energy capacity to be established by 2023.

Repdo will report to a new renewable energy steering committee, chaired by the Minister of Energy, Industry & Mineral Resources Khalid al-Falih. The committee will include the heads of various government stakeholders in the kingdom including: King Abdullah City for Atomic & Renewable Energy (KA-Care), the Electricity & Cogeneration Regulatory Authority (ECRA), state oil major Saudi Aramco and state utility Saudi Electricity Company.

MEED reported in January that KA-Care will form the renewable energy monitoring agency (Remo) and monitor the projects under the NREP.

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