The Uzbekistan government has signed an agreement in mid-October with the International Finance Corporation, a member of the World Bank Group, to issue a tender for a total 900 MW of solar within the next few months under a public-private partnership (PPP) model.
Uzbekistan, a partner country covered in China’s Belt and Road Initiative, is seeking to diversify its energy mix and achieve 5 GW of solar power generation by 2030. With this aim in view, the government will firstly hold two auctions that each assigns a maximum capacity of 200 MW, then put the remaining 500 MW of solar out to tender.
Uzbekistan set to issue a tender for 900 MW of solar within the next few months
According to statistics released by the International Renewable Energy Agency, Uzbekistan’s cumulative PV installed capacity was lower than 10 MW in 2018. This year, it actively implemented PV policy, having held a 100 MW PV auction in early January. This auction, according to Uzbekistan media, was won by UAE-based developer Masdar, with final bids of USD 0.027/kWh.
Last month, a consortium formed by Masdar, French utility Electricity of France, and Chinese solar company Jinko, submitted a USD 0.0175/kWh bid for a 900 MW solar auction held in Dubai.
While this winning bid price pales in comparison to those for large-scale projects in Brazil or Middle East countries, its sheer incomparability in Central Asia has helped blaze a trail for future solar auctions in Uzbekistan.
Earlier this year, the Uzbekistan government introduced a subsidy scheme for rooftop PV in September and announced a plan to build a 40 MW solar power plant in the eastern city of Namangan.
The 900 MW of solar auctions due to be hosted in Uzbekistan will mark a new milestone in the country’s rapidly developing PV industry.
As an inland country in Central Asia with a perennially stable politico-economic environment, Uzbekistan has seen rapid economic growth these years. In the January 2019 Global Economic Prospects, the World Bank forecasts that Uzbekistan’s GDP would grow by an additional 0.2 percentage point to 5.2%. Moreover, Uzbekistan’s investment climate is constantly improving, and its introduction of seven-day visa-free regime for Chinese citizens—starting on January 1, 2020—makes it the first country in Central Asia to grant visa-free entry to citizens of mainland China.
Source: PV Men
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