Total investment in the installation has been estimated at JPY 11.3 billion, Kepco said in an online statement. The Korean utility holds an 80% stake in the project, which is the first PV plant it has financed, developed and built outside of South Korea. The electricity will be sold to regional Japanese utility Hokkaido Electric Power at a feed-in tariff rate of JPY 40 ($0.35)/kWh.
Kepco did not reveal the manufacturer of the 130,000 PV modules that were used in the project, which was built on 108 hectares of land near New Chitose Airport, southeast of the city of Sapporo. Anyang-based LSIS supplied and installed the energy storage system.
State-run Korea Development Bank, Woori Bank and Samsung Life Insurance provided roughly 90 billion Korean won of loans to back the development of the solar array. Kepco and LSIS won the rights to build the project in April 2016. LSIS is now working on several other solar projects in Japan, including an 18 MW installation in Ishikawa prefecture, according to a statement on its website.
Over the past two years, Kepco has invested in a number of renewable-energy projects outside of its home market. In late 2015, it signed a deal to build an 89.1 MW wind farm in Jordan, in cooperation with Danish turbine supplier Vestas. And in August 2016, it jumped into the U.S. solar market with the purchase of an operational 30 MW concentrating PV (CPV) plant in Colorado.