ACWA Power has announced the start of construction on the 300MW Sakaka solar plant to be located in Saudi Arabia.
The ground-breaking ceremony for the Sakaka solar project was commenced by Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz.
Recently, Saudi Arabia-based ACWA Power and AlGihaz have reached financial closure of SAR1.2bn ($320m) for the project.
ACWA Power chairman Mohammad Abunayyan said: “We commenced the year 2018 with King Salman bin Abdulaziz’s presence at the opening ceremony of Sakaka PV IPP last February, which garnered great pride and excitement as we announced the establishment of the first solar energy project in the Kingdom by a Saudi company and national affiliates.
“Today, we renew our pride and honor as King Salman bin Abdulaziz graciously grants us the starting signal to commence the construction and operation of Sakaka PV IPP.”
The Sakaka solar project is first renewable energy project under King Salman Renewable Energy Initiative.
It will be the first utility scale renewable energy project to be developed in the country under the National Renewable Energy Program executed by REPDO (Renewable Energy Project Development Office).
For the solar project, the two companies have formed a new company Sakaka Solar Energy Company (SSEC), in which ACWA will hold 70% stake and AlGihaz will own 30%.
The new company has signed a 25 year power purchase agreement with Saudi Power Procurement Company (SPPC).
The solar plant is expected to begin commercial operations by the end of next year. After completion, the power produced by the plant will be enough to be supplied to more than 75,000 households, while avoiding more than 430,000 tonnes of carbon emissions into the atmosphere every year.
A consortium of Mahindra Susten and Chint is responsible for the project’s engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract. The operations and maintenance contract has been given to Diaa Sakaka Operation and Maintenance Company, an affiliate of First National Operations & Maintenance (NOMAC).