Afghan utility DABS to buy solar power from 10 MW facility at $0.073 per kWh

Afghanistan’s power utility Da Afghanistan Breshna Sherkat (DABS) has announced that a 10 MW solar power plant will be built in Kandahar by Indian developer and independent power producer Dynasty International. The utility said that construction on the project has now begun, with completion scheduled for August 2018.

The project is being financed by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and Dynasty.  The Ministry of Energy & Water (MoEW), DABS and USAID launched the tender for the project in 2015. The plant will be established in Kandahar’s industrial estate with a cost of $10 million. The plant is expected to work in conjunction with the existing diesel and hydropower plants in Kandahar.

“After 15 years this device will hand over to DABS; via this device the problems of the industrial park of Kandahar will [be] solved, and from unproductive factories the power will be allocated and distributed to power networks across Kandahar,” DABS said in its press release.

In August, the USAID announced a power transmission expansion and connectivity project in partnership with DABS. The U.S. agency is funding the construction of a 511 kilometer transmission line connecting the two networks, as well as improvements to the existing southeastern grid. “Once the project is completed,” the utility said, “DABS will be capable of providing affordable power to many more underserved Afghans.”

Afghanistan’s High Economic Council approved a plan to deploy 100 MW of renewable energy generation capacity across the country in March. The plan includes 65 MW of solar, 14 MW from wind power projects, 13.5 MW from biomass and 7.5 MW from hydropower plants.

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.