Wednesday, March 22 2017 18:09
Alina Hovhannisyan

Emirati company "Ocean Holding" intends to invest $ 100 million in the construction of photovoltaic stations in Armenia

ArmInfo. The emirate company "Ocean Holding" intends to invest $ 100 million this year from the construction of photovoltaic stations in Armenia using advanced technologies in the sphere that will be provided in stages. This became known on the fields of the "Armenia-UAE" investment forum, which was held in Abu Dhabi on March 22. As the press service of the Armenian Development Fund told ArmInfo, in this connection the Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources of Armenia and the company "Ocean Holding" signed a memorandum of understanding, within which the development of renewable energy infrastructure in Armenia is envisaged. The Ministry, for its part, committed to provide the company with information on solar energy in Armenia.

According to the source, during the investor forum B2B meetings are envisaged between potential investors and entrepreneurs aimed at developing trade relations between Armenia and the UAE. On the agenda of the forum, it is planned to hold agricultural and veterinary exhibitions, in particular, devoted to energy, real estate, as well as presentation of stories of foreign companies that had successful experience in Armenia and a number of investment projects. The Armenian-Emirates Business Association prepared the exhibition.

The forum aims to stimulate economic ties between Armenia and the UAE, which provides discussion of the immediate prospects of trade flows, and presentation of investment projects to Arab investors. The forum was attended by about 300 participants, including government officials, fund managers, representatives of multinational companies, international organizations, and foreign companies with successful investment experience in Armenia. The President of the Republic of Armenia, Serzh Sargsyan, opened the forum .

Earlier, in an interview with the ArmInfo correspondent, the Deputy Minister of Energy Resources and Natural Resources of Armenia reported that an international tender for the construction of a 50-megawatt solar power station in Gegharkunik region of Armenia in the "Masrik" area of Armenia will be announced at the end of March this year. According to him, at the present time the process of determining all the criteria for the pre-qualification stage of the tender is being completed. At the end of January this year, within the framework of the investment forum, various companies presented their views on this issue. As a result of the dialogue, the deputy minister continued, a list of those criteria that will be reflected in the conditions of the competition is formed. Hayk Harutyunyan stressed that more than 40 foreign companies showed interest in the project. "But our task is to involve exclusively qualified, professional companies in the tender process, enterprises that do not have relevant work experience will be excluded from the forthcoming competition." In the framework of the project, we want to get an exemplary, technologically equipped station, and we do not need companies with dubious work experience, which will submit their proposals, and then start to shirk their commitments, "the deputy minister said, adding that those companies that will pass the prequalification phase will be admitted to the final tender.

To recall, the total cost of the program for the construction of solar power plants in Armenia is $ 129 million. Feasibility studies have already been prepared for the construction of solar power plants with a capacity of up to 100 megawatts. Within the framework of the program it is planned to build stations with a capacity of up to 110 megawatts in various regions of Armenia. Of the six surveyed areas by two, the Spanish consulting company Aries Engineering has already submitted feasibility studies. They relate to the localities of "Masrik" in Gegharkunik region and "Dashtadem" in Aragatsotn region, and studies on the remaining four localities continue. One of the main conditions of the contest will be the tariff offered by investors. The advantage will be the company that will offer the minimum tariff. The climate investment fund for the development of alternative energy provided Armenia $ 28 million, of which $ 2 million is a grant and $ 26 million is a loan. The loan terms are soft - 0.25% per annum with a maturity of 40 years and a grace period for payments in the first 20 years. Grant funds are being used to study the localities, develop a feasibility study for the project, calculated at a station of 100-120 megawatts of capacity. Earlier, the representative of the Spanish company Acciona, Miguel Araras, informed of the intentions of the company not only to participate in the upcoming tender, but also to invest 200 million euros in the construction of solar stations in Armenia. According to him, the company intends not only to take part in the tender for the construction of a 50-megawatt solar power station in the Masrik area, but also to build photovoltaic facilities of 150 megawatts. But for this, continued Miguel Araras, the state guarantees in the return of the invested funds are necessary. "We want to come to Armenia for a long time, at least for 25 years, and we must be confident in protecting our investments," the company representative said, adding

that in addition to solar generation, the company project to build a wind station in the Lake Sevan region.  The Spanish company Acciona - the world leader among the enterprises of the sector of electricity production with the help of renewable sources - invests in the current year in the construction of "energy parks" from 600 to 700 million euros. The company's management expects to invest in the same amount annually in the projects of "alternative electricity" until 2020. The total volume of the proposed investments for this period is 3.5 billion euros, 2 billion of which will be invested in the company's facilities built outside of Spain. According to the National Statistical Service of Armenia, the foreign trade turnover between Armenia and the UAE in 2016 was $ 119.3 million, having increased by 2.3-fold in the annual section. In particular, exports increased by 7-fold to $ 63.8 million, while imports increased by 27.4% to $ 55.5 million.


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