IFC will support construction of 13 solar PV power plants in Benban Solar Park near Aswan. The initiative is expected to provide clean energy to over 350,000 residents and to generate up to 6,000 jobs during construction. When completed, Benban will be largest solar installation in the world, operating with a total capacity of 1600 MW.
Phoenix Energy, together with partners Infinity Solar of Egypt and IB Vogt of Germany, will commence construction of a 64 MWp solar PV power plant within the park in Q1 2018 with a target commercial operation date (COD) of January 2019. The $70 million project is financed by IFC, a long-time partner of Phoenix Energy’s mother company, INDEVCO, as well as CDC Group of the UK, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank of China, and Finance in Motion of Germany.
According to Rabih Osta, Area General Manager for Phoenix Group, “Developing this project in Benban Solar Park makes environmental, economic and social sense. It opened the door to the private sector to support the country’s goal of 20% of its electricity from renewable resources by 2022. It also demonstrates Phoenix’s strong social and environmental commitment.”
Solar and renewable energy is expected to grow exponentially in the Middle East and Africa with 14GW in solar plants installed by the end of 2018 — a seven-fold increase from 2015.1 Hand in hand, renewable investments, like that of the IFC, are growing. The share of IFC’s renewable investments within its power portfolio has more than doubled in the last decade to 60%.2
The team involved in the launch of this project includes Phoenix Group Area General Manager, Rabih Osta, Phoenix Finance & Administrative Manager, Sami Sfeir, and Phoenix Energy Operations Manager, Simon Gerges, assisted by Interstate Paper Industries Quality & HSE Manager, Kamel Khalil, INDEVCO Senior Director of Strategic Business Development, Fadi Freiha, and INDEVCO Senior Director for Projects, Raja Mouracade.
During the Nubian Suns Program ceremony, Egyptian Minister of Electricity, Dr. Mohammed Shaker, Egyptian Minister of Investment & International Cooperation, Dr. Sahar Nasr, and IFC Vice President, Dimitris Tsitsiragos, signed the agreements in the presence of Managing Director & World Bank Group Chief Administrative Officer, Shaolin Yang, and IFC’s Country Manager for Egypt, Walid Labadi.
In attendance were representatives from the consortium of nine international banks investing for the first time in Egypt’s renewable-energy sector. Phoenix Energy’s counterparts, selected as well to build solar power plants, included Acciona of Spain, Swicorp of Saudi Arabia, TBEA of China, Alcazar of the United Arab Emirates, Shapoorji Pallonji of India, SECI and Enerray of Italy, Desert Technologies of Saudi Arabia. Other developers under EBRD financing include EDF of France and Scatec Solar of Norway.
About Phoenix Energy
Phoenix Energy, located in Safra, Lebanon, provides power management consultancy and renewable energy solutions, including solar PV systems, solar water heaters, solar outdoor lighting, LED lighting solutions, biomass boilers, absorption chillers and wooden frame houses. In addition, Phoenix Energy provides resource assessment services and turnkey commercial projects to recycle and transform waste into electricity using waste-to-energy systems.
Phoenix Energy is a member of Phoenix Group and a member of the multinational INDEVCO Group. One of INDEVCO’s environmental sustainability objectives is to partner closely with Middle East and North Africa governments and energy associations to formalize solar power as a political priority and to reduce energy consumption through optimizing existing systems and installing renewable energy technologies.