Uzbekistan launches latest tender for 500MW of solar

A project in Mauritania from Masdar, which has been successful in previous Uzbek tenders. Image: Masdar.

Uzbekistan has started the request for qualification stage for a solar tender that will support three projects totalling up to 500MW, including one paired with a battery energy storage system.

The tender process seeks independent power producers to design, finance, operate, maintain and transfer the 150MWac Namangan, 100MWac Khorezm and 200MWac Bukhara plants. It is envisaged that the Bukhara project will also include battery storage components with a capacity of around 63MW.

Interested parties have until 29 November 2021 to submit qualification documents. Winning bidders will be compensated for the sale of electricity through a 25-year power purchase agreement signed with a state-owned electricity off-taker.

The tender is being carried out alongside the International Finance Corporation as part of the World Bank’s Scaling Solar programme, which aims to make it easier for governments to quickly procure and develop large solar projects with private financing. 

A previous Uzbek tender under Scaling Solar saw Masdar secure the rights to develop two PV plants in the country with a combined capacity of 440MW after offering lower energy costs than other participants such as ACWA Power and Total Eren.

Masdar has since won another tender to construct a 457MW solar plant in Uzbekistan and also inaugurated the 100MW Nur Navoi farm, the country’s first utility-scale solar project.

On the back of its solar tenders in the last two years and rising electricity demand, Uzbekistan may increase its 2030 PV deployment target from 5GW to 7GW, the energy ministry said last month.