Bahrain has reviewed its future plan in the field of renewable energy with a delegation from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Thursday.
This came during the reception of Electricity and Water Affairs Minister Dr. Abdulhussain Mirza for a delegation from the IMF, headed by Bikas Joshi.
Bahrain is set to develop a 100 megawatt solar power plant with the private sector in line with directives from the Government Executive Committee.
The project will be implemented in partnership with the private sector as the first investment in this field and will provide, upon completion, 2.5 percent of Bahrain's electricity production.
In 2016, Bahrain’s government introduced the National Energy Efficiency Plan and the National Renewable Energy Plan. The plans aim to source five percent of the country’s electricity consumption via renewable energy and resources.
Bahrain expects this goal is to be completed by 2025 and spur a wide range of energy and power initiatives across the Kingdom.
The tendering process will begin in February and the project will be ready for operations by the end of 2019. The Bahraini government will provide the land of the project and undertake to purchase the plant's production of electricity at a specified tariff that will be agreed on when the project is awarded.
Bahrain has been experiencing growth rates in electricity demand of up to 6 percent annually, which requires the implementation of large projects.
The country currently produces its full needs of electricity using natural gas, and the solar plant project will provide the country 2.5 percent of its electricity needs.
Manama is seeking to provide five percent of its electrical power needs of solar energy, equivalent to 250 megawatts by 2025, and the country currently produces about 3,920 megawatts of electricity per day from natural gas plants.
Bahraini officials expect the investment in renewable energy and clean energy to be attractive to Gulf investments. The cost of production has fallen due to the development of solar panel technology and the need for countries to enter the private sector as a partner in the implementation, management and maintenance of electric power projects.