Chinese solar giant to set up in Dubai
Chang Zhou Almaden plans $30mn factory to produce panels.
Chinese solar panels manufacturer Chang Zhou Almaden has announced plans to set up a factory in Dubai as it looks to tap markets in the Middle East.
Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority (DSOA), the regulatory body for the Dubai Silicon Oasis, said it has signed an agreement with the producer of photovoltaic anti-reflective coated glass to host its new manufacturing and training facility in the free zone technology park.
The 15,000 sq m factory will be set up at a total capital cost of AED110mn ($29.9mn), marking Almaden's foray into the MENA region.
Designed to produce up to 400,000 PV panels every year, the manufacturing facility is set for completion in the first quarter of 2015, a statement said.
At the DSO plant, Almaden will produce specialised super thin dual glass PV panels to suit the desert climate, especially for residential buildings, car parking areas, green houses, roof tops and solar farms, it added.
The facility will additionally host a training centre that will target raising awareness on green energy and sustainable solutions for the MENA region.
The agreement was signed by Dr. Mohammad Alzarooni, vice chairman and CEO of Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority, and Jinxi Lin, chairman of Chang Zhou Almaden during GITEX Technology Week.
Alzarooni said: "We welcome Chang Zhou Almaden to the hi-tech park and look forward to a symbiotic partnership with the world's largest producer of anti-reflective glass. The Middle East is rapidly gaining international attention as an emerging market for solar energy.
"This has led to high uptake for innovative technologies. Dubai offers an international platform with comprehensive regional reach, providing Almaden the perfect location to establish its regional manufacturing facility."
Lin added: "Solar is definitely the energy source for the future and although there are huge challenges facing the industry, we believe Almaden will create an impact on the market with our improved eco-friendly technology, competitive pricing and quality standards.
"Our ultra-thin dual glass PV panel has been especially designed for the hot summers of the Middle East allowing minimal power loss in high humidity and high temperature environments.
"We are glad to make our entry into this region with our facility at Dubai Silicon Oasis. We are confident our operations will contribute to Dubai's green vision and contribute to reducing the emirate's carbon footprint."
Almaden has branches in the United States, Germany, Australia and China with over 400,000 sq m of manufacturing base and 1,500 employees worldwide.