Egypt Independent

Egypt’s largest solar plant receives US$114 mn financing package



On Thursday, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the OPEC Fund for International Development (the OPEC Fund), the African Development Bank (AfDB), the Green Climate Fund (GCF) and Arab Bank signed a US$114 million financing package with ACWA Power for the construction of the largest private solar plant in Egypt.

According to an EBRD press release, the new plant, Kom Ombo, will add 200 MW of energy capacity, serving 130,000 households and further increasing the share of renewable energy in Egypt.

The five signatories will provide funding for the project, which will be located approximately 20 kilometers from African’s largest solar park, the Benban complex.

ACWA power, the company responsible for Benban, won the Egyptian government’s tender to construct and operate the plant. Kom Ombo will be the company’s fourth project in Egypt.

EBRD President Odile Renaud Basso said: “We are very happy to team up again with ACWA Power in Egypt, after our successful partnership in Benban, to promote renewable energy in Egypt. Increasing the production of clean energy is an important step to reducing carbon emissions and addressing climate change. This is in line with the EBRD’s strategy to become a majority green bank by 2025. This project also marks the EBRD’s first co-financing project with the AfDB and the OPEC Fund in Egypt and we look forward to future joint investment opportunities for our institutions across Africa.”

OPEC Fund Director-General Abdulhamid Alkhalifa said: “We are pleased to contribute to Egypt’s efforts and strategy to expand its generation capacity in the renewable energy space. We have been at the forefront of advocating for access to affordable clean energy for many years. Kom Ombo will be our third project with ACWA Power and it exemplifies great cooperation between government, development finance and private-sector actors.”

“The Kom Ombo solar project is a truly remarkable transaction. It not only clearly demonstrates the indisputable competitiveness of solar PV vis-à-vis conventional sources of generation, but it also contributes directly to the realisation of Egypt’s ambitious renewable energy targets, in addition to being an excellent example of what stakeholders driven by a shared objective can achieve,” said AfDB Vice President of Power, Energy, Climate Change and Green Growth Kevin Kariuki.

Yannick Glemarec, Executive Director of the Green Climate Fund, said: “The GCF looks forward to continuing to support the government of Egypt in delivering on its ambitious climate targets through innovative partnerships with the private sector.”

The Kom Ombo plant will contribute to the Egyptian government’s target to generate 42 per cent of the country’s electricity from renewable energy sources by 2035 while delivering one of the lowest generation tariffs on the continent.