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OPINION

Oman: Aggressive Shift to Renewables

The demand for electricity is expected to increase from 7.7 GW in 2019 to 16 GW in 2030. Oman is mainly reliant upon hydrocarbons for power generation. The countr y has a significant potential for renewable energy with one of the world’s highest solar energy densities. 

The National Energy Strategy for 2040 foresees 10% of the total energy mix to be supplied by renewable energy sources by 2025. 

PV and wind projects are the main drivers of renewable energy in the country. PV and wind projects are the main drivers of renewable energy in the country. These objectives are supported by Oman 2020 Vision and Seven year Development Plan calling for economic diversification and reduced dependency on oil revenues. The share of renewable energy generation objectives has been reviewed to higher targets. 

The sultanate has forecast an increase in peak power demand of 53%, reaching 9.96 GW by 2023. Of this total, 11% of electricity generated will come from renewable energy sources. By 2030, renewable energy should account for over 30% of the energy mix. 

  • In the second phase of its solar program, Oman Power and Water Procurement Company 
  • (OPWP) launched in July last year the prequalification phase for two IPPs with a combined output of more than 1GW. The Manah Solar I IPP solar facility and the Manah Solar II IPP will each have capacity between 500 and 600MW. 
  • The qualifications of 9 consortiums have been announced on the 17th of December 2019. OPWP recently issued a request for proposals (RFP) from the prequalified consortiums. Contracts are expected to be awarded in 2021 with the commercial operation planned in Q4 2023.
“The National Energy Strategy for 2040 foresees 10% of the total energy mix to be supplied by renewable energy sources by 2025.
  • OPWP is planning to install a CSP plant with a capacity of up to 600 MW plus battery storage systems. The project is anticipated to proceed only if Oman’s plan to deploy a Clean Coal Independent Project is not pursued.
  • The 500 MW Ibri II Solar Independent Solar Project, around $400 million, was awarded in early-2019 and is expected to be commercially operational in June 2021.
  • Petroleum Development Oman (PDO) signed a 23-year PPA agreement for the 105 MW Amin Solar PV project in early 2019. Commercial operation began in May 2020.


ROOFTOP SOLAR

In May 2017, Oman Authority for Electricity regulation launched Sahim I, allowing large households and businesses to install small grid connected PV systems at their own costs and to sell power back to the grid at prevailing bulk electricity tariff.

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