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UAE solar survey suggests need for feed-in tariff

ESIA and PwC find strong local knowledge of country's solar potential

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The survey found that the lack of a feed-in tariff to encourage solar power was a key challenge. (GETTY IMAGES)
The survey found that the lack of a feed-in tariff to encourage solar power was a key challenge. (GETTY IMAGES)

The Emirates Solar Industry Association (ESIA) and PwC have announced the results of a national solar power survey that the pair has conducted in the UAE. The findings have suggested that the government is viewed as a key driver for the solar power industry’s growth in the country, whilst calling for a feed-in tariff incentive scheme and better access to bank financing for solar projects.

The survey was undertaken with the support of the UAE government, and gathered insights from 170 solar industry professionals. More than 60% of respondents were based in the country, and were drawn from a range of sectors including government, project engineering and technology manufacturers.

“This survey clearly outlines the barriers for large-scale investment in the UAE solar power market. It will serve as a helpful reference for local and federal policy-makers. I am confident that by addressing the collective concerns highlighted in this survey we will be able to transform the UAE into a regional hub for solar energy,” said ESIA president Vahid Fotuhi.

Government targets – which sees Abu Dhabi targeting a 7% renewable energy contribution by 2020, and Dubai a 5% contribution by 2030 – were perceived as a solid starting point for the industry. However, those surveyed suggested that regulatory frameworks were needed for the industry to properly flourish.

“We all know there is plenty of sunshine in the UAE and that there are plenty of parties interested in developing this resource, in line with the government’s green growth agenda. Our survey highlights some of the perceived challenges in making this happen – financing, experience, regulatory certainty – challenges that the public and private sector can now focus on and resolve together,” said PwC senior manager Hannes Reinisch.
 

 

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