Saudi Arabia and Softbank continue work on multi-billion dollar renewable energy projects



Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) is working with Softbank Vision Fund and other entities on a number of large-scale multi-billion dollar solar energy projects and denied a Wall Street Journal report that plans for a $200 billion solar project were stalled.

PIF, with assets in excess of $250 billion (Dh918.1bn), will announce those projects "in due course", it said in a statement on Monday, and called the Wall Street Journal report "inaccurate".

"Plans to develop a leading champion for the industry remain on-track and in-line with the timeline that would be anticipated for projects of this scale and ambition," PIF said.

In March, Saudi Arabia and Softbank signed a memorandum of understanding to develop the world's largest solar power project. The announcement was one of several projects that signalled the world's biggest oil exporter is increasingly focused on renewable energy.

_______________

Read more:

Saudi Arabia expected to break ground on first wind project this year, Acwa CEO says

Middle East renewable energy targets require as much as $40bn capital investment, says GE

_______________

The $200bn solar project is set to create thousands of jobs and develop a manufacturing industry in line with the kingdom's economic diversification plans laid out in its Vision 2030. The project is expected to have the capacity to produce up to 200 gigawatts by 2030, according to SoftBank chief executive Masayoshi Son.

On September 30, the Wall Street Journal reported the plan was stalled as "no one was actively working" on the project, it said, citing unidentified Saudi officials and a government adviser. The sources said the government is working on a "broader, more practical" strategy for renewables that will be announced in late October during a Riyadh conference.
The kingdom is ripe for investing in solar energy because of plentiful sunshine and growing cashflow as oil prices rebound to more than $80 a barrel. 
"The kingdom is moving forward with the overall renewable energy strategy, through which Saudi Arabia aims to be a leading and reliable diversified supplier of renewable energy," the fund said.

Investing in solar power allows Saudi Arabia to decrease the amount of crude it currently uses to generate power and boost its overseas shipments.

The cost of the first stage of the solar project will be $5bn and the remaining portion of the project will be through project debt financing.

Most recently, Saudi Arabia has invested in electric carmaker Lucid in line with its strategy to back renewable energy projects.

MATCH INFO

Europa League semi-final, second leg
Atletico Madrid (1) v Arsenal (1)

Where: Wanda Metropolitano
When: Thursday, kick-off 10.45pm
Live: On BeIN Sports HD

Blue Beetle

Director: Angel Manuel Soto
Stars: Xolo Mariduena, Adriana Barraza, Damian Alcazar, Raoul Max Trujillo, Susan Sarandon, George Lopez
Rating: 4/5 

Rajasthan Royals 153-5 (17.5 ov)
Delhi Daredevils 60-4 (6 ov)

Rajasthan won by 10 runs (D/L method)

World Cricket League Division 2

In Windhoek, Namibia - Top two teams qualify for the World Cup Qualifier in Zimbabwe, which starts on March 4.

UAE fixtures

Thursday February 8, v Kenya; Friday February 9, v Canada; Sunday February 11, v Nepal; Monday February 12, v Oman; Wednesday February 14, v Namibia; Thursday February 15, final

SPECS

Engine: Two-litre four-cylinder turbo
Power: 235hp
Torque: 350Nm
Transmission: Nine-speed automatic
Price: From Dh167,500 ($45,000)
On sale: Now

Poacher

Director: Richie Mehta

Starring: Nimisha Sajayan, Roshan Mathew, Dibyendu Bhattacharya

Rating: 3/5

Zidane's managerial achievements

La Liga: 2016/17
Spanish Super Cup: 2017
Uefa Champions League: 2015/16, 2016/17, 2017/18
Uefa Super Cup: 2016, 2017
Fifa Club World Cup: 2016, 2017


Latest
Most Read
Top Videos

Energy This Week

Expert analysis on oil & gas renewables and clean energy

      By signing up, I agree to The National's privacy policy
      Energy This Week