Tunisia has secured funding – in the form of grants and loans – for the development of its 100 MW Kairouan solar PV system to expand electricity generation and renewable portfolios.
The project represents the first solar independent power producer project in Tunisia, according to Wale Shonibare, Director of Energy Financial Solutions, Policy and Regulation at the African Development Bank (AfDB).
The funding includes a $27 million and €10 million loan package approved by the AfDB. Of the package, $10 million as well as an additional €10 million has been granted by the AfDB while $17 million in concessional financing will be sourced from the Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa. The funds will be combined with additional financial aid granted by the International Finance Corporation and the Clean Technology Fund.
The solar PV system will be developed and managed by AMEA Power through its subsidiary Société Kairouan Solar Plant S.A.R.L in El Metbassta, Kairouan North region, 150 km south of the Tunisian capital, Tunis.
Dr. Kevin Kariuki, Vice President of Power, Energy, Climate and Green Growth at the AfDB, stated that the project “will not only be a pioneer for other grid-based solar and wind independent power projects currently under development in Tunisia but also a benchmark for the bankability of renewable energy projects in the country, as it is underpinned by robust and sustainable agreements negotiated over the last three years under extremely onerous market conditions.”
The project is one of five renewable energy projects awarded in 2019 by the government and is in line with the country’s Nationally Determined Contribution which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while expanding generation capacity for energy security and climate change mitigation.