Saudi Arabian developer Acwa Power on 29 June inaugurated its 120MW Khalladi wind farm at Jbel Sendouq, 30km from Tangiers in Morocco. The completed project comprises 40 wind turbines and will produce 380GWh/yr, contributing to the reduction of more than 144,000 tonnes of CO2 per year.

Khalladi, which cost around $170m to build, is one of the first privately funded renewable energy projects in the country and has been developed under the 13-09 regulatory framework, which allows private producers to sell electricity directly to high voltage clients. The project has signed three power purchase agreements (PPAs) with cement companies Holcim Morocco, Asment, and Cimat to whom it will sell 80% of its production, with the remainder sold under short-term merchant PPAs or to Office National de l’Electricité et de l’Eau Potable (ONEE).  

Debt was provided by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the Clean Technology Fund, and Morocco’s BMCE Bank of Africa. Khalladi is owned by Acwa Power (75%) and the Arif Investment Fund (25%), which is managed by Infra Invest.

EBRD director for power and energy utilities Harry Boyd-Carpenter said, “this is a landmark project in particular because it does not rely on government support but instead is selling power in a competitive environment, demonstrating that clean, renewable power has really come of age.”

Acwa Power chairman Mohammad Abunayyan said “We are proud of having been able to establish in Morocco a solid foundation of seven power plants which will all be operation by the end of this year. With a portfolio valued at over $3.2bn, we look forward to participating in future tenders that will be offered to the private sector for power generation and desalinated water production capacity.”

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