Dubai to host inaugural solar expo
Dubai, June 20, 2012
Solar Middle East, an exhibition dedicated to the solar power industry in the region, will make its debut on the sidelines of Middle East Electricity expo in Dubai next year.
The inaugural solar event, which will run from February 17 to 19, is being officially supported by solar industry partner associations, the Saudi Arabia Solar Industries Association (Sasia) and the Emirates Solar Industry Association (ESIA).
The Middle East’s lead role in the growth of the solar power industry will be underlined by this new event. The debut show is expected to attract more than 150 suppliers of solar products from around the world, said the event organisers.
The expo will create major opportunities for manufacturers and suppliers worldwide to capitalise on heavy investment by regional governments, it added.
According to experts, the Middle East has been playing a major role in the growth of solar power industry spearheading projects worth $6.8 billion in the region mainly in UAE, Kuwait, Oman, Egypt, Jordan and Morocco.
The UAE continues to lead the way as part of the strategy to reduce its reliance on fossil-fueled power generation, led by the $600 million Shams 1 in Abu Dhabi, the world’s largest concentrated solar power plant due to be completed by August.
'Solar energy is poised for rapid growth in Saudi and the wider Mena region, as a host of public announcements made by regional governments indicate their plans to embrace renewable energy,' remarked Browning Rockwell, the founder and chairman of Sasia.
Saudi, Oman, and Kuwait have all announced plans to produce at least 10 per cent of its energy from solar and renewables by 2020, while Egypt, Jordan, and Algeria have also set similar goals.
In Dubai, where the new exhibition will debut next year, the $3.2 billion Al Maktoum Solar Park is slated to begin construction in 2014 and will reach a peak of 1,000MW production capacity upon its scheduled completion in 2030.
More planned solar power projects in the region include the $150 million solar enhanced oil recovery (EOR) project in Oman, which will begin construction next year, and the $525 million 100 MW Solar Power Plant in Kom Ombo, Egypt, also set to begin construction in 2013.
According to Rockwell, Saudi has big plans for the future as it looks to attract $109 billion in investment to create a solar industry generating a third of the nation’s electricity - the equivalent of 41 gigawatts - by 2032.
The influx of new and planned solar projects in the region and the business opportunities being created will be spotlighted by the inaugural edition of Solar Middle East.
Anita Mathews, th exhibition director of Solar Middle East said: “The Mena region is perfectly poised to take advantage of solar technology, with a staggering 630,000 terawatt hours of solar energy falling on the region every year. As such, governments are investing heavily in the application of solar technology.”
“We decided to introduce Solar Middle East as a dedicated event for the solar power industry in response to a significant increase of exhibitors and visitors at Middle East Electricity that are involved in solar,” she added.
“With the regional solar landscape set to expand dramatically in the coming years as new technology enters the market, the timing is perfect to launch Solar Middle East in 2013, and we look forward to a hugely successful first year,” she added.-TradeArabia News Service