Qatar Solar Energy (QSE) has signed a landmark agreement with Kazakhstan-based multi-billion dollar energy company, Kazatomprom, which will supply QSE with raw materials used in the production of solar panels.
The agreement was signed by QSE chief executive officer Salim Abbassi and Kazatomprom Solar Division chairman Azat Betekbaev to accelerate QSE’s solar power purchase agreements (PPA) in Kazakhstan.
Under the agreement, Kazatomprom will supply QSE with solar grade silicon, the raw material used to make solar panels, at a competitive fixed cost for the next 10 years.
It also places Qatar at the forefront of the market since the demand for raw polysilicon will continue to grow as the global need for solar energy increases exponentially in the near future.
Kazatomprom, ranked as the world’s largest producer of uranium, has been active in renewable energy since 2009. The company implements a number of high-tech innovative projects in the sustainable energy sector, including the production of photovoltaic modules (Astana Solar), production of ingots, wafers and cells (Kazakhstan Solar Silicon), and solar grade silicon production (Kaz Silicon).
“This partnership allows QSE to secure the entire value chain from raw material to smart-grid development and provides a powerful foundation from which QSE will further expand its production capacity to 2.5 GW,” Abbassi said.
According to Abbassi, the steady supply of quality raw material is crucial to QSE’s mission to deliver low cost and affordable renewable energy for populations across the world.
“Solar grade silicon from Kazatomprom will be used in the manufacture of QSE’s innovative products that are designed to perform in the most demanding environments. By lowering costs and increasing efficiency, QSE is accelerating the democratisation of renewable energy worldwide,” said Abbassi.
He noted that QSE is achieving this by combining research, development, and manufacturing under one roof to form a fully-integrated value chain.
When it reaches capacity of 2.5 GW, QSE will make Qatar one of the largest producers of solar power in the world, contrasted with the total combined capacity of production in Europe and the US, which currently stands at 3.4 GW, Abbassi stressed.
“QSE is making remarkable strides having launched its solar technology research and production facility in the Mena region in June 2014 and the subsequent signing of this landmark agreement with Kazatomprom,” Abbassi said.
He said QSE was putting Qatar in a leadership position for both exporting innovative solar renewable energy technology products and knowledge transfer on high performance cells, modules, and smart-grid development.
QSE and Kazatomprom have also committed to deepening their mutual engagement through knowledge-sharing and training to drive the solar industry forward. In September 2014, the first delegation of Kazatomprom engineers will travel to QSE headquarters in Qatar to initiate the knowledge-sharing engagement.
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