Saudi Arabia is set to invest up to US$50 billion over the next 10 years in 30 new solar and wind projects, with the interim goal of producing 10% of its electricity from renewable sources—10 gigawatts—by 2023.
The country also plans to build an unspecified number of new nuclear plants, Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih told a conference last Monday.
Saudi Arabia currently generates about 200 megawatts from renewable sources.
“The country is currently seeking bids to build 700 megawatts of wind and solar power capacity in a first round of tenders,” Bloomberg reports, citing the head of the country’s renewable energy project development office, Turki Al Shehri. “It plans a second tender round for rights to build 400 megawatts more of wind power and an additional 620 megawatts of solar plants.”
The tenders will offer 20- to 25-year contracts for bidders to own and operate the renewable energy plants, Bloomberg notes. “They will be able to renew their operating licenses or sell the plants after that, and the government will not own the renewable projects.”