The Russian solar project developer Solar Systems LLC has announced that it has been granted an 850 million RUB ($14.93 million) loan by local commercial bank Gazbank.
The company said the seven-year loan will be used to finance purchase of equipment, construction and installation works and other services related to the building of a 15 MW PV plant in Volodarsky, Astrakhan region, south-western Russia.
“The Astrakhan solar power plant is the first project in our portfolio, and therefore it was especially important for us to structure its financing as efficiently as possible,” said Olga Bykova, deputy general director for investments and finance of Solar Systems. The company added that, taking into account the current situation in the foreign exchange market, maximum reorientation to ruble financing is optimal for the project.
Solar Systems broke ground on the 15 MW project in Astrakhan in early March. According to a press release from the regional government, the Zavodskaya SPS solar project is scheduled for completion in the third quarter of this year.
The company will install 56,626 modules with a power rating of 260 W at the facility. The modules are manufactured at the company’s 100 MW monocrystalline silicon solar panel factory in the special economic zone of industrial and production type “Alabuga”, located in Yelabuga municipal district of the Republic of Tatarstan.
In Russia, PV projects that rely on locally manufactured products receive considerably higher FITs than projects using imported PV components.
Solar Systems is a unit of China-based solar plant operator Amus Sirius, which is itself a subsidiary of Harbin Electric Company Limited, a Chinese provider of a comprehensive range of electric power generation equipment. The company has a PV project portfolio with a capacity of 255 MW in Russia. All of its projects were selected in the latest bidding rounds of the country’s renewable energy program.