07 July 2015
Norwegian developer Scatec Solar is entering Pakistan’s nascent solar market with plans for up to 300MW of large-scale PV.
Scatec Solar has joined forces with local developer, Nizam Energy, and together the two companies have agreed to develop, build, own and operate PV power plants over two 150MW phases.
In a statement, the companies said development and financing of the first US$300 million phase would be complete by the end of this year, with construction slated to begin in early 2016.
The second phase would add a further 150MW, although no timelines were given for this element.
Together the two 150MW phases of the project are expected to generate up to 580GWh of power per year.
Apart from being the majority shareholder in the project, Scatec Solar would also be responsible for the financing, turnkey construction, operation and maintenance of the projects. Nizam Energy will be the local co-developer, co-investor and a potential sub-contractor during construction and operation phase. The two partners have been working together since late last year to develop solar power projects in Pakistan.
Pakistan is currently experiencing acute energy shortages, with a deficit that can reach one-third of peak demand at its worst. In 2013 the country’s new prime minster Nawaz Sharif made power generation one of his priorities, with solar set to feature as part of the solution.
Scatec Solar CEO Raymond Carlsen said: "This project is an important landmark in Scatec Solar's journey to provide clean and affordable energy in developing countries. The Pakistani authorities have shown their commitment to addressing the nation's rising energy demand."
Usman Ahmad, CEO of Nizam Energy added: "Access to energy is a prerequisite to improve standard of living. We are keen to increase the role of clean solar power in Pakistan's energy mix."
Scatec Solar’s first foray into Pakiistan would also be its first significant venture in an Asian PV market. Until now, the Norwegian firm has been focused primarily on opportunities in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and North and Central America.
Since going public on the Oslo stock exchange last year, Scatec Solar has been targeting an installed capacity of 750MW of PV by the end of 2016.