EDF Renewables and Elsewedy Electric have commissioned two solar power plants in the Egyptian desert with 65MW in capacity each that form part of what will soon be the world’s largest solar power complex.
The plants at Benban in the province of Aswan in southern Egypt have received funding from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), one of various international lenders supporting the project.
EDF Renewables said Benban will “soon” have a capacity of 1.8GW. According to Egyptian news media citing the chief executive of the country’s r enewable energy authority, Mohamed al-Khayyat, the solar complex will be completed in December with a capacity of 1.47GW.
“We are proud to be playing our part in delivering the large-scale Benban solar complex by commissioning these two solar power plants,” said EDF Renewables chief executive Bruno Bensasson.
“With the establishment of our new subsidiary in Cairo, we have reached a major milestone in EDF Renewables’ long-term development in Egypt and across the North African renewable energy market as a whole.”
Benban forms part of Egypt’s objective to generate 20% of its electricity from renewables by 2020.
The solar complex is divided into several dozen plots that are built by a series of private companies, among the also Spain’s Acciona or Norway’s Scatec.
EDF Renewables owns 180MW in installed PV capacity in North Africa and is set to build a further 800MW as part of the Moroccan Noor Midelt I hybrid solar project, which it won last May.
EDF has a target to double its renewables energy capacity in France and worldwide to 50GW net between 2015 and 2030.