Noureddine Boutarfa: Viewpoint
We have set ambitious and promising targets for renewable energy, and we are determined to make the next 20 years an era of real development for sustainable energy. Algeria’s national plan envisages 47-51 TWh by 2030, of which more than 9 TWh should be installed by 2020.
We have always insisted that the strategy for implementing the national renewable energy development programme is based on two components – the energy itself and the industry that can emerge as a result. This dual principle will allow for the large-scale development of renewable facilities combined with a national industry, which will include all elements of the renewable value chain, including engineering, equipment and construction. We are keenly aware of the importance of the contribution made by national economic actors. We pay particular attention to creating the best conditions to achieve the objectives assigned to the new renewable development strategy.
In this regard, I would like to stress that all contributions are welcome, whether they are from institutional, economic or scientific actors, as the implementation of the programme will be based on the efforts of all. The initial phase of our programme has already been launched, and at the end of 2016 Algeria will have a capacity of 343 MW distributed throughout 14 wilayas, or provinces, in the country.
Currently, 16 plants, with a capacity of 195 MW, are already functional and provide renewable energy to the network, with another six set to come on-line shortly. These plants have enabled us to identify the constraints and challenges that can arise during the development of large-scale renewable energy projects. The assessment of the national energy sector has confirmed that it possesses the needed competencies and capacities, and as such our strategy will aim to help participating companies grow by guaranteeing them an environment suitable for their continued development.
The Algerian government has already established a national fund for energy management, renewable energy and cogeneration, which is funded – by law – annually, to the tune of 1% of the oil industry’s royalties. For various reasons, such as lower equipment costs on the international market and the rising use of tenders around the world to compete with investors and reduce the per KWh price of renewable energy, Algeria will use this mechanism in order to protect the consumer by offering clean and sustainable energy at the lowest possible price per KWh.
To accelerate the programme’s implementation, a call to investors for 4000 MW in solar technology is being finalised by the energy sector for the installation of electricity-generating facilities from renewable sources. This will also be on condition of investment from the industrial sector. The call makes it possible for investors to build power plants for renewable energy at pre-selected sites, which will facilitate the procedural aspects for investors, as well as increase the pace of implementation. Studies concerning the connection of these sites to the electricity grid are under way to determine the capacity of the power stations to be installed. It is obvious that this mode of implementation will require the search for strong, beneficial and equitable international partnerships in order to enable Algeria to invest in a genuine energy transition, aimed at production and consumption models that are clean, profitable and sustainable.
In addition to the tendering mechanism for domestic and/or foreign investors to form partnerships, a specific mechanism for auctioning quantities of renewable energy will be implemented for national investors. These investments will be guaranteed by the fact that in addition to the support provided to the programme by the state, appropriate mechanisms will ensure the purchase and payment of electricity production. Other measures to support investment are also planned to encourage the development of renewable energy outside the electricity grid, in particular applications in agriculture, water resources and individual usage.
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