Afghanistan issues tenders for three hybrid solar projects totaling 55 MW

Afghanistan’s National Procurement Authority has issued three tenders for the construction of three hybrid solar power plants with a combined capacity of 55.5 MW.

One project, planned for the Hisar-e-Shahi Industrial Park (HIP), which is located 22 km southeast of Jalalabad City, in the eastern province of Nangarhar, will have a capacity of 40 MW. Closing date for this tender is Oct. 7, 2017.

Another 5.5 MW hybrid solar facility is being planned for the Daykundi Province, located in the central part of the country. Interested developers must submit their bids by October 8.

A third project, a 10 MW hybrid PV facility, is expected to be built in the Khost Province, eastern Afghanistan. Closing date for this tender is October 10.

These are not the first hybrid solar projects under development in the country. In late March, Afghanistan’s High Economic Council approved a plan to deploy 100 MW of renewable energy generation capacity, which included 65 MW of hybrid solar. According to a document released by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) in October, the solar projects selected in a previous tender range in size from 1 MW to 30 MW.

The largest project is a 30 MW solar diesel hybrid system located in the southern province of Kandahar, which is especially plagued by electricity shortages. The second and third biggest projects are a 10 MW solar hydro hybrid plant and a 5 MW rooftop PV system, which will both be located in Kabul. Another 5 MW solar project will be developed in the province of Ghor, while a 3 MW installation will be built in Helmand province. The remaining projects have a capacity between 1.5 MW and 1 MW, and are located in other provinces.

Afghanistan’s Ministry of Energy and Water aims to install 500 MW of PV plants by 2020. The country’s renewable energy policy is targeting 4 GW to 5 GW of new renewable energy capacity by 2030.