Ghana to see 50 MW PV plant installed

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Daniel McCormick, managing partner at Siginik, a subsidiary of Episolar Inc., has told pv magazine that work on the plant is scheduled to get underway in the northwest region of Ghana in the fourth quarter of 2012. He added that construction is expected to last between 12 and 18 months. 800 jobs are set to be created.

Most of the necessary permits have been secured, continued McCormick, although the company is still waiting for the final building permits. Regarding subsidies, he commented, "We have negotiated our Power Purchase Agreement with ECG and we will not be receiving other subsidies. Of course, all the local Government entities are providing ongoing support."

In a statement released, he further said, "Ghana is a fast growing economy … This will benefit the general Ghanaian community as they can have more consistent power and in the short term, similar to the effects of the Green Energy Act in Ontario, facilitate the creation of a highly skilled green labour force, which will be able to build future green and solar projects in the ECOWAS area."

Siginik and ECG have also hinted at further photovoltaic projects in the country, although no further details were released.

At the end of 2011, Ghana’s President signed the Renewable Energy Act 831 (REA 831), which will be put in place by the beginning of this month. The goal is to increase the share of new renewables in the country to ten percent in 2020, with large-scale hydro 75 percent renewables.