Abu Dhabi’s Taqa to press ahead with Dh40bn investment plan as part of renewables push

The company plans to add about 27 gigawatts of power capacity and expand its renewables portfolio

Taqa’s 2030 strategy, announced in April last year, involves investing $10.9bn in infrastructure development. Victor Besa / The National
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Abu Dhabi National Energy Company, or Taqa, as it is known, reiterated its commitment to invest Dh40 billion ($10.9bn) in infrastructure development as it focuses on its push into renewable energy, its group chief executive and managing director said on Monday.

The company is also building the largest gas-fired power plant in the UAE, the Fujairah F3 Independent Power Producer (IPP) project, which will have a power generation capacity of 2.4 gigawatts, Jasim Thabet said at Abu Dhabi Sustainability Summit.

“We’re committed to investing Dh40bn in networks, power and water for the future,” he said during a panel entitled Corporations Transforming: Harnessing the Power of Nature for a Sustainable Future.

Last April, Taqa announced its 2030 strategy, which involves investing $10.9bn in infrastructure development as it seeks to add about 27 gigawatts of power capacity and expand its renewables portfolio.

Asked about how reducing energy consumption could lead to more efficiencies in the industry, Mr Thabet said: “Efficiencies is us rolling out more renewable solar projects.”

Besides its Noor Abu Dhabi solar power project, Taqa is building Al Dhafra Solar PV Plant, which has a capacity of 2 gigawatts and will overtake Noor Abu Dhabi to become the world’s largest single-site photovoltaic plant, once complete.

“I’m really focusing on, with the solar coming online and also connecting Barakah nuclear plant to the transmission grid. There’s more opportunities to decouple the power and water and focus on water desalination, which is really a big component of the power consumption for the UAE,” Mr Thabet said.

Earlier on Monday, Taqa, together with Emirates Water and Electricity Company, raised $700.8 million through its first green bond as it diversifies funding sources to include sustainable financing for projects.

Taqa will use the proceeds of the deal to refinance existing debt of Sweihan PV Power Company, the entity set up to build, own and operate Noor Abu Dhabi solar power project, it said in a statement.

Maturing in 2049, the bonds offer a 3.625 per cent coupon and are expected to receive BBB+/Baa1 ratings from S&P and Moody’s, respectively. The deal was 1.8 times oversubscribed with local, regional and international investors placing total orders of $1.26bn, the company said.

Updated: January 17, 2022, 8:55 PM