In North Africa, Egypt is seeking to develop power projects that will deliver a combined 30GWs of power. The aim is to bring on board development finance institutions (DFIs) and private sector investment to develop generation, transmission and distribution projects.
Next month, energy industry stakeholders will gather at the Egypt Energy Investment Summit, in Cairo to discuss, among other topics, the essential need for DFIs and the private sector to actively participate in driving these projects.
Need for private sector investment
According to PV Magazine, Egypt’s minister of electricity and renewable energy, Mohamed Shaker El Markabi, expressed that adding access to electricity, in order to promote economic growth, was “an absolute priority.”
Last year, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), Country Director for Egypt, Philip ter Woort, said that Egypt relies to a large extent on traditional power generation fuelled by costly hydrocarbon imports. With this said, he added that government has a target of attaining 20% of the country’s electricity from renewable sources by 2020.
“Egypt is well placed to do so as it has world-class solar resources and in some places, especially in the Gulf of Suez, great potential for wind power,” ter Woort said.
Managing director of the Egyptian Electricity Utility and Consumer Protection Regulatory Agency, Hatem Waheed, said: “Egypt will create a highly competitive and proper environment for new investment in conventional and renewable energy and energy efficiency.”
In December, Egypt secured $500 million from EBRD, to help fast-track the country’s new solar power initiative, which aims to develop a total of 2,000MW to be distributed over 40 utility-scale projects.
The funds, which have been earmarked for 2016, will be used towards the development of several plants and will help the country achieve its goal of generating 20% of its total power generation from renewable resources.