Italians plan PV parks and production facilities for Brazil

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Following a March 5 meeting with representatives of Astra Energia, Brazilian state authorities announced that the Italian company is planning to install photovoltaic projects in Brazil’s northeast state of Rio Grande do Norte.

Astra Energia estimates that investments of BRL3.2 million (around $1.6 million, €1.2 million) will be needed per MW of installed photovoltaic capacity, or a total of BRL160 million for the 50 MW.

Rio Grande do Norte secretary of economic development, Rogério Marinho, who participated in the talks with Astra Energia’s director general Piero Ferrara, explained that the interest expressed by the Italian company "demonstrates that the state offers the best market conditions for investments in renewable energy."

Manufacturing

Representatives of the state secretariat also met with Umberto Bacilieri of Italy’s Real Watt Solar. He said the group is planning to invest in a photovoltaic module manufacturing facility in the eastern municipality of Arez. The plant is scheduled to start operations before the end of 2013 and is expected generate a total value of around €200 million in 10 years.

To speed up its entry in the market, Real Watt Solar will start importing panels directly from Italy, according to a government release. Bacilieri said his company plans to initiate operations in Rio Grande do Norte as soon as possible, in order to benefit from the favorable conditions offered by the state government’s Import-RN program.

Real Watt Solar also intends to open a manufacturing facility for producing other electrical equipment needed to install solar parks. The combined investment is expected to total BRL740 million (around $376.5 million, €288.9 million).

Edited by Becky Beetz.