Emirati companies urged to participate in Colombia’s first renewable energy tender: Official

ABU DHABI

The Colombian Vice-Minister of Energy has called on Emirati firms to participate in his country’s long awaited first ever clean energy tender.

“I don’t have the final full roster of firms vying for contracts in our first ever tender for large-scale renewables. However, there are new players on the list and from here in Abu Dhabi I invite Emirati firms to participate in this win-win investment,” Diego Mesa told the Emirates News Agency, WAM.

“The list [of bidders] was unveiled only over the weekend and … there is a big potential for Emirati companies, like Masdar, to participate in the auction, which is due to close on 22nd October.

“The results should catapult the Colombian photovoltaics market into a leading role in South America,” he added.

“The short-term goal is to reach 1.5 GW (gigawatts) of renewable capacity by 2022. It’s a big leap for a country with only 80 MW (megawatts) of installed capacity at present.

“Renewable developers will commit to providing fixed volumes of energy with an obligation to start supplying by 1 January 2022.”

Over the weekend, the energy planning unit in Colombia published the list of bidders for a tender that will match renewable developers with potential buyers, with contracts running for 15 years.

In the meantime, the Colombian official affirmed that the relations with the UAE have gained “a significant momentum” after the visit of H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, to Colombia earlier this year.

“Bilateral relations are being strengthened. We opened our embassy here in 2012 and since then we have signed several MoUs with the UAE Ministry of Energy and Industry and with Masdar,” Mesa said.

“We are an open market and we are looking forward to working with UAE in different sectors, with a special emphasis on energy [like] oil and gas, as well as rural development.”

He said the opening of the UAE embassy in Bogota, Colombia in March is another step forward to further grow relations between the two countries. “We have now a new ambassador to the UAE and I believe the future abounds in a lot of opportunities for us to grow relations.”

On the global energy landscape, the Colombian official expressed cautious optimism due to the “alarming” trade tensions between superpowers, calling for global collaboration “to secure stability of energy supplies.”

“We have the shale [oil] revolution in the US. We have the trade tensions between two world superpowers [US and China]. There are a lot of dynamics in the sector that need to be addressed. Prices are somewhat stable now, which is good for some players in the market,” he said.

US$60 per barrel makes sense for shale producers; for offshore and other conventional sources of oil and gas. But in order to maintain stability, the world is required to take all needed actions to address the trade tensions between the world superpowers.”

He expressed his belief that oil demand will increase, or “at least stabilise, even if prices hiked.”


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