Armenian Energy Infrastructures and Natural Resources Minister Arthur Grigoryan received Monday Executive Director at Access Company Vahid Fotuhi, the ministry’s press office reports. Prospects for wind energy development were discussed at the meeting.
Stressing the importance of construction of wind stations in Armenia, Grigoryan expressed willingness to discuss proposals and projects which can give a new impetus to the implementation of the program.
The parties discussed the program of construction by the Access Infra Central Asia Limited of a 130-megawatt electric power plant in Gegharkunik province. Fotuhi said that Access Company is ready to invest $200 million in construction of wind power plants in Armenia’s other provinces.
Grigoryan, on his side, said that necessary groundwork is laid for mutually beneficial cooperation and favorable environment is created for making successful investments in Armenia.
The Armenian Government has approved the construction of the 55MW Masrik-1 solar power plant, the World Bank Armenia Office reported. It said for this project, the government has issued the letter of award to a consortium comprising Fotowatio Renewable Venture (FRV) and FSL Solar. Masrik-1 is reported to be the first competitively tendered independent power project (IPP) in the country.
In 2014, the Armenian Government has recognized the importance of the utility-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) under the scaling-up renewable energy program investment plan (SREP), which offered a project preparation grant of $2m.
The SREP and the World Bank team supported the renewable resources and energy-efficiency fund. This financing was offered with the installation of ground-based solar resource measurements; the identification of Masrik-1 as the candidate site for the first round of tender; and the commissioning of feasibility studies, and environmental and social impact assessments.
SREP and the World Bank also provided a guarantee instrument to mitigate investment risks, attract international developers and increase competition. World Bank Armenia country manager Sylvie Bossoutrot said: “The Masrik-1 solar power plant is a pioneering project for Armenia, as well as for the South Caucasus region, and an exciting opportunity for the country to further develop its renewable energy potential.
“Furthermore, the open and competitive bidding process carried out by the government has set an example for future investments in the country.” During its 20-year lifespan, the power plant is expected to reduce nearly one million tons of carbon, as well as create short-term and long-term jobs in the region.
The project is also expected to improve long-term energy security in the country by promoting the development of solar resources. The country’s dependency on imported natural gas will also be reduced. SREP and the World Bank have also identified another five potential solar projects with a total capacity of 55MW in the region that will be launched in a second round of competitive bidding in the near future.
Under the auspices of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) within the framework of improving the power transmission network, Yerevan Thermal Power Plant CJSC implements reconstruction of Yerevan Thermal Power Plant substation.
The goal of the project is to reconstruct the Yerevan Thermal Power Plant substation, which are being operated for 30 years and more. Substation reconstruction will contribute to the reduction of the frequency of failure of the 220/110/35 kV substation of the Yerevan Thermal Power Plant. The recovery will result in increase safety and reliability of the substation and power system.
Currently the constructions are underway, products and basic equipments are imported. Specifically, the 200 MVA autotransformer, 2 pcs 27.5 Mw transformers, 220 kV and 110 kV portals, switches, dividers were imported.
According to Vardan Martirosyan, Head of the Department of Credit and Grant Projects at the RA Ministry of Energy Infrastructures and Natural Resources, most of the remaining equipment is on the road or ready for shipment. Works on the foundation, landing contour and drainage system are being completed. The constructions of basic management and 35 kV substation buildings are in process.
At the same time, the installation of imported portals, the assembly and mounting of metal structures of equipment are also being implemented.
In 2015, the Republic of Armenia and the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) signed a grant agreement, with the launch of an industrial Utility-Scale Solar Power Project.
Three years later, on March 27, 2018, the Project recorded important outcomes of extensive work carried out during those years. During the tender arranged for “Masrik-1”- 55 MW capacity solar PV plant, the Financial Proposals of the Pre-Qualified Companies were opened and the name of the investor that offered the lowest electricity tariff was announced. The lowest tariff was proposed by the Consortium comprised of the leading international companies: Fotowatio Renewable Ventures B.V, Netherlands (Lead Sponsor)- FSL Solar S.L., Spain (Anchor Sponsor). The proposed tariff is 0.0419 USD excluding VAT (20.11 AMD). For comparison, the current tariff for small hydropower plants on the natural flows/streams in Armenia is 23.8 AMD.
The final results indicate that the Solar PV development today in Armenia may compete successfully with other branches of the energy sector, has a higher weight in the energy balance of the country and may boost progress in energy security and independence of Armenia.
“Masrik-1” Solar PV plant is planned to be constructed in Mets Masrik community of Gegharkunik province, with the involvement of foreign investments. There are all the necessary preconditions for the construction of a modern powerful PV plant in the area selected for the plant. It will generate up to 120 million kW/h electricity annually. The expected investment amount is about $ 50 million.
The tender for “Masrik-1” Project was launched in the scope of the “Energy Week” held in Yerevan, in February 2017. More than 50 foreign companies took part in the traditional “Energy Week” event. The high interest of the investors was also confirmed at the pre-qualification stage of the Project. More than seventy companies from Europe, the United States, China, India, South Africa and other countries procured bids. Twenty companies submitted bids, ten of which passed the pre-qualification stage and were allowed to participate in the Tender and submit their tariffs.
It is worth to add, that the efforts of the Government of the RoA, the Ministry of Energy Infrastructures and Natural Resources of the RoA, the Public Services Regulatory Commission, Armenia Renewable Resources and Energy Efficiency Fund and its Consultants, as well as activities carried out directly with the World Bank support, included not only “Masrik-1” Utility-Scale Solar PV Project promotion, but also assessment of the solar potential of Armenia and elaboration of precise solar maps developed by the international advisory company, selection of six sites for the construction of large solar plants with a total capacity of 120 MW, preparation of bidding documents required for the organization of the Tender for Investors, including implementation of feasibility studies.
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development will finance two large-scale projects in Armenia, the press office of the Armenian Water Committee reported on Monday. According to the press release, Arsen Harutyunyan, chairman of the committee, and Dimitri Gvindadze, the newly appointed head of the EBRD office in Yerevan, discussed details at their meeting.
Prospects for cooperation in other programs were discussed at the meeting as well. Harutyunyan said that the water committee is implementing a number of programs under the EBRD support, two of which are already completed.
“One of them is a program for Armenia’s small communities – it has been implemented also by using the EBRD-lent money,” he said. “Thanks to this program, water supply has been improved in Tavush, Lori, Shirak, Kotayk, Syunik and Vayots Dzor provinces and sewerage facilities have been built in Tavush and Vayots Dzor.”
Harutyunyan said that the implementation of other two programs is under way now. One of these programs targets provinces and the other one Yerevan. An €80-million investment program implies reconstruction and modernization of water supply and sewerage infrastructures in the 126 communities in nine provinces which are badly in need of such improvements. The EBRD will provide a €30-million loan for this program.
The program designed for Yerevan implies replacement of already dilapidated water supply facilities, such as pipes and pumps, with new ones. The program is estimated to cost $21 million, of which $7 million will come from the EBRD. Gvindadze expressed hope for success and visible results.
The results of the tender announced for choosing a builder of a photo voltage solar power plant in Armenia will be known in spring 2018, Hayk Harutyunyan, deputy energy infrastructures and natural resources minister, said Wednesday at a pre-tender conference. The project implies construction of Masrik-1, a 45-to-55-megawatt photo voltage solar plant.
“As many as 20 companies from all over the world have applied for participation in the tender, but only 10 of them and one consortium have passed the pre-qualifying stage,” Harutyunyan said. “Very tight requirements have been put up to contenders at the pre-qualification stage, and therefore few could be able to continue racing for the right to build and run the plant.”
The following Dutch, American, Korean, German and other companies have reached the second round: TBEA Xinjiang Sunoasis Co., Ltd, China –Subsolar Energy Holding LLC, the Netherlands, Phelan Energy Group Limited, South Africa –Korea Electric Power Corporation, Shapoorji Pallonji Infrastructure Capital Company Private Limited, India – Risen Energy Co. Limited, China, Metka, Greece –Energy Phoenix, Lebanon, Access Infra Central Asia Limited, U.A.E – Eren Renewable Energy S.A., France – TSK Electronica, Spain, Fotowatio Renewable Ventures B.V, Netherlands, –FSL Solar S.L., Country: Spain, Acciona Energia S.A.U., Spain, Building Energy Development Africa, Italy –H1 Holdings (Pty) Ltd, South Africa, Sky Power Global and Cayman –Enerparc Projects GMBH, Germany, CountourGlobal LP, Cayman Islands.
The deputy minister said that the construction of the first photo voltage solar plant is expected to be launched already this year and that the plant will be commissioned no later than in 2020. Harutyunyan also said that prices for electric power were among selection criteria in the tender.
“We expected from applicants a record low price, a price lower than that of thermal plants and comparable to that of hydro power plants to down also the price for final consumer. As for the cost of the project, it may be $40 to 60 million, according to preliminary estimation.
In accordance with the investment program, an average price calculated for operation of Masrik-1 photo voltage solar plant for 25 years is 6.39m cents per one KWt/h, including VAT. A $58-million investment program aimed at renewable energy development was launched in Armenia in summer 2015.
The program is designed for five or six years and is being implemented by the Renewable Energy Fund with support from Climate Investment Funds, the Armenian energy and natural resources ministry, the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank. (1$ - AMD 480.63).