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IRENA praises Egypt’s investment moves in renewable energy

Sat, Oct. 13, 2018
CAIRO – 12 October 2018: CNN screened a video report on the progress in renewable energy around the globe, and especially in the Arab world, where IRENA head praised Egypt’s investment moves in the sector.

“Egypt has started investing in renewables in a very interesting way at large scale, which I think is beginning to change the equation in the local energy sector,” said General Director of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) Adnan al-Amin as interviewed by CNN.

During the interview, Amin said that there are several markets around the world where renewable energy is competing head on with the fossil fuels, adding “we project that by 2030 the cheapest form of power generation on the grid will be renewable energy.”

He further hailed other early moves by Arab countries on renewable energy like the United Arab Emirates, and their ambitious investments to generate power for very low cost, in addition Jordan’s profile as one of the best renewable energy economies. The list expanded to Morocco, as he said that “it has done a phenomenal job with solar and wind over the past three years.”

He went on explaining that two main factors help the renewable energy market to flourish, which are an enabling policy and regulatory strategy that encourages investors come to the market.

Amin arrived in Cairo last week, where he attended the renewable energy conference that kicked off on Oct. 9.

The New and Renewable Energy Authority (NERA) has adopted a strategy since 2016 to increase the sector’s contribution to Egypt’s energy to 20 percent by 2022 from the current 10 percent. The breakdown is 12 percent for wind energy, 2 percent for solar energy, and 6 percent for hydropower. According to the authority, the most suitable areas for generating wind energy are western Suez Gulf, eastern and western Nile valley, and some locations in Sinai.

A wind farm will be built near the Suez Gulf with the capacity of 2 billion kilowatts per year. Another wind farm is almost finished in Gabal El-Zeit with a capacity of 580 megawatts.

Egypt has begun building the largest solar energy station in the world- containing 40 plants - in Aswan’s Binban with a capacity of 1465 megawatts. The first plant in the station started operating this year with a capacity of 50 megawatts and is called “Infinity.”

Additional reporting by Nourhan Magdi and Noha el-Tawil
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