Qatar’s 800 MW Siraj 1 solar project has reached financial closure with the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) and Mizuho Bank agreeing to finance the construction of the project. The Japanese lenders have signed a $330 million syndicated loan according to the Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation.
The 10 km² Siraj-1 solar project is being developed at Al Kharsaah, west of Doha and is expected to start commercial operations from April 2022. The project will have bifacial solar panels that can generate power from the front as well as the rear side. The said project will be owned and managed by a special purpose company established by Japanese trading house Marubeni Corporation and French oil giant Total S.A. along with a Qatari energy firm. It will sell electricity for 25 years to Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation. A consortium led by French oil giant Total and Japanese conglomerate Marubeni secured the said project in January 2020 in a tender. The power generated from the project will be sold for $0.01449/kWh.
Qatar heavily relies on fossil fuels for meeting its electricity needs and is a major exporter of natural gas. The Siraj-1 solar project is a part of the country’s efforts to increase the share of renewable energy in its total electricity mix to 20 per cent by 2030.