ACWA Power sells 24% stake in 700 CSP project to Chinese concern

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China’s Silk Road Fund will acquire a 24.01% stake in the 700 MW project – said to be the largest single-site solar park in the world based on the Independent Power Producer (IPP) model.

The concentrated solar power (CSP) plant is the fourth phase of the 1 GW Mohammed bin Raschid al-Maktum solar park, which sits around 50 km south of Dubai.

It will now be jointly invested in, and developed by, state-owned electricity supplier, Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA), the Silk Road Fund, and ACWA Power, the latter of which was awarded the contract in 2017, after submitting the lowest bid of around US$0.073 per kWh.

Last September, it was said that the project is expected to be commissioned in stages, starting from the fourth quarter of 2020, at an estimated investment cost of $3.8 billion.

Overall, the Mohammed bin Raschid al-Maktum solar park is being developed across four phases at an estimated investment of $13.6 billion. While the fourth phase comprises CSP, the remaining three are utilizing solar PV.

In March 2017, DEWA announced that construction had been completed on the second, $326.7 million 200 MW phase – one month ahead of schedule. U.S. thin film manufacturer, First Solar supplied the modules for the project, which is selling power to the grid at a tariff rate of $0.0585/kWh.

Construction on the third, 800 MW phase, meanwhile, began in January 2017, after a consortium comprising GranSolar, Acciona, and Ghella were awarded the EPC contract, also in January.

The construction is set to be completed in three stages, with the first 200 MW expected to be operational by the first half of 2018, and then two 300 MW stages will follow in the two years after.