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ACWA, NEPCO sign power deal

By JT - Mar 29,2017 - Last updated at Mar 29,2017

AMMAN — ACWA Power and the National Electric Power Company (NEPCO) on Monday signed an electricity purchasing agreement as part of a set of 15 agreements between Saudi Arabia and Jordan.

The deal will see the development, financing, construction, ownership and operation of a new 61.3MWp solar energy project in Risha, in eastern Jordan, according to a statement on the Saudi company ACWA Power's website. 

Under the agreement, ACWA Power will sell electricity to NEPCO for a "record-low" tariff of JD0.042 per kWh, "the lowest tariff for solar energy ever presented for a Jordan-based project", the statement said.

The rate is 3.3 per cent lower than the previous lowest tariff provided to Jordan with the Mafraq solar project — also developed by ACWA Power under the Round II of Proposals for Renewable Energy in Jordan.

With the Risha photovoltaic independent power producer (IPP), ACWA Power’s portfolio in Jordan now expands to eight assets, with an aggregate capacity of 1,665MW, representing almost 40 per cent of the total installed electricity capacity in Jordan. It thus reinforces ACWA Power’s position as the largest IPP operator in Jordan, the statement said.

The signing ceremony was part of the state visit of Saudi King Salman to Jordan, during which both countries signed a number of agreements, Memoranda of Understanding and joint investment deals on Monday.

“This landmark project in Risha is a significant step forward in achieving Jordan’s renewable energy targets, and in providing stable and economical electricity supply in Jordan," NEPCO Director General Abdel Fattah Daradkeh was quoted in the statement as saying.

He added that, once completed in 2019, the plant will save 79.000 metric tonnes of CO2, demonstrating Jordan’s commitment to renewable energy.

Commenting on the deal, ACWA Power Chairman Mohammad Abunayyan said: “The Kingdom of Jordan has long recognised that renewable energy can offer safe, reliable power to the public."

Once completed, the project will deliver solar energy at the lowest possible cost to 12,000 households, Abunayyan added. 

ACWA Power will develop the new clean energy plant next to the existing Central Electricity Generating Company (CEGCO) 150MW gas turbine plant in Risha.

Chairman of CEGCO Thamer Al Sharhan stated: “Access to energy is a bedrock of sustainable economic development, and we are proud to partner with Jordan on its journey to reach, not only 1,000MW of renewable energy, but also the kind of risk reductions, job creation, and improved trade balances that can accompany greater energy deployment.”

 

The new solar energy facility is part of the Kingdom’s efforts to meet rising electricity demands, which have increased 7 per cent per year, due to the country’s booming population and mounting industrial needs.

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