Saudi Arabia to have world’s biggest solar power project

200 GW of solar power to be produced by 2030

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Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman, deputy premier and minister of defense who is also the chairman of the Saudi Public Investment Fund, and SoftBank Group Corp. Chief Executive Masayoshi Son exchange an MoU in New York on Tuesday to establish a solar power project in Saudi Arabia. — Courtesy photo

Saudi Gazette report

NEW YORK
— Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman, deputy premier and minister of defense who is also the chairman of the Saudi Public Investment Fund, and SoftBank Group Corp. Chief Executive Masayoshi Son signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) in New York on Tuesday to establish the world’s biggest solar power project in Saudi Arabia.

Two solar plants with a capacity of 3 gigawatts and 4.2 gigawatts will be launched by 2019. Solar panels will be manufactured and developed in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, with a capacity to produce 150 gigawatts and 200 gigawatts (GW) of solar power by 2030.

The feasibility studies will be completed by May 2018.

The project will contribute to creating an estimated 100,000 jobs in the Kingdom.

Solar panels, bigger than the geographical area of Tokyo, will be visible even from space.

Supply chains for raw materials such as copper, silica and metal wire are all available in Saudi Arabia.

Gas discoveries in Saudi Arabia, specifically in the Red Sea, will give added value to the silica smelter supply chains involved in the production of solar panels for this project.

The solar project is as important as that of the discovery of oil in the Kingdom.

Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 reform plan, which aims to reduce the country’s economic dependence on oil, was a good match for the fund’s long-term vision for innovation, said Son.

“These two visions have come together to create clean, sustainable, low-cost and productive renewable energy,” he said.


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