EDF & Jinko Power Start Construction of Solar Project in Abu Dhabi
The consortium, formed by French EDF Group subsidiary EDF Renewables and Chinese Jinko Power HK subsidiary of Jinko Power Technology Co Ltd, have successfully reached the financial closing for the 2 GW Al Dhafra PV2 solar projects in Abu Dhabi in United Arab Emirates. This operation has been completed along with TAQA Group and Masdar, the Abu Dhabi-based shareholders and major players in the electricity and renewable sectors. The approximately 1 billion USD transactions has been funded via project financing with BNP Paribas as bookrunner together with Bank of China, Crédit Agricole, HSBC, MUFG, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation and Standard Chartered, as mandated lead arrangers.
Completion of this major milestone allows the mobilization on site and start of construction. Located in the region of Al Dhafra, 35 kilometres south of Abu Dhabi City, this solar photovoltaic plant will be the largest single-site solar plant worldwide.
Al Dhafra PV2 solar project will be the first plant of such scale to deploy bifacial module technology, capturing as such light on both sides of the PV modules and thus benefits from the reflection of light by the ground in order to yield higher generation. The plant spans over 20 square kilometres of desert climate area, with more than 4 million PV modules.
Upon commissioning, targeted in 2022, this project will provide the equivalent electricity to power over 160,000 local households.
A call for tenders was launched in June 2019 by Emirates Water and Electricity Company, a leading company in the coordination of planning, purchasing and providing of water and electricity across the UAE. EDF Renewables & Jinko Power consortium submitted the most competitive bid.
As the project is under an independent power producer model, EDF Renewables and Jinko Power hold respectively 20% of the shares, the remaining 60% is owned by TAQA and Masdar.
The four partners had previously signed the 30-years Power Purchase Agreement on July 23rd 2020.