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Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia

Saudi 9GW renewables plan in doubt

SAUDI ARABIA: Saudi Arabia's plans for 9GW of wind power by 2032 are in doubt following the disbanding of the Supreme Council of the King Abdullah Centre for Atomic and Renewable Energy (KA-Care) as part of a government reshuffle.

From KA Care website... Saudi Arabia plans for 9GW of wind in doubt
From KA Care website... Saudi Arabia plans for 9GW of wind in doubt

The move to disband KA-Care follows the death of King Abdullah last month.

The centre, which opened with much fanfare in 2010, was charged with implementing an ambitious plan for 54GW of renewable energy by 2032, including 9GW of wind. However, after issuing a white paper in 2013 outlining a procurement strategy there has been little sign of progress.

The Middle East business intelligence site MEED speculates that this is due to lack of experienced staff to run such an ambitious programme, as well as unrealistic goals.

While it is not clear what role KA-Care will now play in the development of renewable energy in the Kingdom, "the global power sector is hoping that the restructuring will usher in a fresh start for KA-Care, and finally kickstart the region's most eagerly anticipated alternative energy programmes," MEED said.

Of the 9GW wind that was expected to be procured, just under 2GW was due to be tendered over the next three years. However, there has been little movement since the original announcement.

Following the introductory round, where perhaps 100-150MW was expected to be contracted, two tendering rounds were meant to be launched by 2016. These were to include 650MW of wind in the first round and 1.05GW in the second round.

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