Zorlu Energy to build MW-sized PV plants in Palestine

Turkish energy company Zorlu Energy, a unit of Turkey-based industrial conglomerate Zorlu, is planning to build an unspecified number of PV plants in Palestine.

The company said it has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Palestinian utility Jerusalem District Electricity Company (JDECO), which provides 30% of households in West Bank and East Jerusalem with electricity, for the construction of the solar plants, without providing additional information on the projects.

The company, which said it is partnering with U.S. solar manufacturers First Solar in 26 countries in the Eastern Europe, Eurasia and Eastern Mediterranean regions, has already expanded its solar activities outside of Turkey with contracts to build two PV plants totaling 300 MW in Pakistan.

“As Zorlu Energy, we continue to deepen and diversify our investments in solar energy systems. Our 300 MW solar energy investment decision in Pakistan and the agreement we signed in order to be the biggest business partner and the exclusive distributor of First Solar in 26 countries were highly meaningful, as those are our first initiatives on this subject. With this investment we have planned to make in Palestine, we have taken another important step towards our goal of leading the development of solar energy in our region,” the company’s CEO Sinan Ak said.

That solar energy may represent a strategic asset for the troubled Middle Eastern region is demonstrated by the recent confiscation of a PV system by Israeli authorities in the West Bank. According to the Independent, the solar power generator, which had been donated by the Dutch government, was providing with power around 150 people in the village of Jubbet al-Dhib. According to the article, the installation had been deployed without the proper permits. The Dutch Foreign Ministry has asked for the equipment to be returned.