Iran wants to deploy 10 GW of renewables over the next four years


The Iranian Energy Ministry announced, last week, a plan to add another 10GW of renewable energy capacity over the next four years as part of an overall strategy to deploy 30GW of power generation capacity.

On Sunday, the ministry and the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Organization (SATBA) signed a memorandum of understanding with unspecified private investors to implement the plan and announced their intention to allocate around IRR30 trillion ($71.4 million) in the next budget law to move forward with the first projects.

According to SATBA, there are currently more than 80GW of renewable energy projects that have been submitted by private investors for review.

Iran has an installed renewable energy power generation capacity of around 900MW, of which about 414MW is represented by solar installations. According to the International Renewable Energy Agency, the country installed around 50MW of new PV power in 2020 and around 90MW in 2019.

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Despite a feed-in-tariff scheme for large scale PV and a net metering mechanism for rooftop PV, Iran’s solar energy development has remained below expectations since the real market inception, in 2016. Solar developers active in the country had to deal with two main issues: difficult access to financing and re-imposed sanctions by former U.S. President Donald Trump.

Last week, however, Tehran-headquartered company Mana Energy Pak commissioned the country's first solar cell factory. The 150MW facility is located close to the city of Khomeini in western Iran. The company’s website states that it has, additionally, purchased a factory able to produce 1.2GW of multi- and monocrystalline wafers per year, without mentioning the location of this factory. It also states that it has operated a 250MW production line for PV modules at the site near Khomeini since early 2020. According to SATBA, further phases already under construction will increase the factory’s PV module capacity to 1.5GW by the end of 2023.

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