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Egypt: New Fertile Soil for Solar Energy

Egypt: New Fertile Soil for Solar Energy

2017-08-08

In recent years, Investors have been doubted whether Egypt can emulate Jordan's success. And there's a good sign that the solar will have strong growth in Egypt in 2018.

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From the Nile River to the mountains of southeastern Iran, the Middle East is fertile ground for solar energy development. (NASA)

Over the past few years, Egypt has been deliberately imitating Jordan's successful solar policy. In October 2014, for example, FIT was launched to promote the development of solar power plants in the country by international investors. Efforts have since been made to improve investment conditions. And announced and implemented the second round of more relaxed conditions of the FIT program.

In the first round of FIT projects, the capacity of small scale projects of PPA has reached 12 MW and the capacity of large projects has reached 111MW. In the second round, about 30 projects have been approved, with a total capacity of about 1, 500 MW.

In terms of construction, only three of the projects signed in the first round with the final approval of the Egyptian Ministry of Energy should be completed, two of which would amount to 100 megawatts... in the second round. Already 1,240 megawatts of projects have been financed.

After the FIT expired, the government made it clear that it would pursue a solar policy through bidding plans for large projects and net metering programmes. But to get financing, Egypt still needs to prove its policy is correct. And show willingness to stick to the policy sincerity.

In 2017 Egypt also revised its net measurement framework to allow the sale of excess electricity raising the ceiling from 500 kilowatts to 20 megawatts. Power users can also install net metering systems. The government has also introduced policies that allow investors to sell electricity directly to consumers.

These policies give Egypt an opportunity to diversify its electricity generation portfolio, in particular its policy of phasing out electricity subsidies, as a result of these policies, namely, FITT, tendering, net metering and private projects. Electricity is expected to bring retail prices continue to rise.

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