UAE and Saudi Arabia have forged a renewable joint venture to construct a portfolio of solar energy projects with a total investment of over $1.5bn.
The countries are seeking funds by the end of 2014 to finance the development of 1,000MW of projects that is estimated to power nearly 200,000 households.
Emirates Solar Industry Association president Vahid Fotuhi told Bloomberg that the proposed expansion across the countries including Jordan would require loans and export credits.
Initial contracts for the planned projects are set to be awarded in 2014, Fotuhi added.
The solar energy expansion is in line with Saudi Arabia’s plan to invest nearly $100bn to add about 41,000MW of solar energy to its renewable portfolio, representing a third of its total power output by 2032.
Investment in renewable industry across the Middle East and North Africa surged by 40% to $2.9bn in 2012, reported Bloomberg citing the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).
In a report published in association with the UAE government, IRENA claimed that investment in renewable energy projects including solar and geothermal sources would increase to $13bn in next few years.