Egypt - Country Commercial Guide
Renewable Energy

This is a best prospect industry sector for this country. Includes a market overview and trade data.

Last published date: 2020-09-15

Overview

Egypt possesses an abundance of land, sunny weather and high wind speeds, making it a prime location for renewable energy projects. The renewable energy equipment market is potentially worth billions of dollars. The Egyptian government is cognizant of the need for a sustainable energy mix to both address increasing demand, and to move to a more environmentally sustainable and diverse electricity sector. The 2035 Integrated Sustainable Energy Strategy, which builds on previous strategies, emphasizes the importance of renewable energy. Egypt intends to increase the supply of electricity generated from renewable sources to 20% by 2022 and 42% by 2035, with wind providing 14 percent, hydro power 2 percent, photovoltaic (PV) 22 percent, and concentrating solar power (CSP) 3 percent by 2035. The private sector is expected to deliver most of this capacity.

Part of Egypt Vision 2030 is to increase local content in all fields. The Ministry of Electricity and Renewable Energy (MOERE) succeeded in reaching 30 percent local content for wind farms in 2018 and is expected to increase the share to 70 percent by the end of 2020. The ministry is expected to reach 50 percent local content for CSP projects also by the end of 2020.

The New & Renewable Energy Authority (NREA), which falls under the Ministry of Electricity, plays a strategic role in implementing the government’s renewable energy plans. Egypt currently has about 500 MW of wind power plants in operation and 1340 MW under development. There are also three privately owned independent power producers (IPPs), with total generation capacity of about 2.5 GW, which started operations 2002-2003 under 20-year long power purchase agreements with the state-owned Egyptian Electricity Holding Company (EEHC). The Egyptian government’s renewable energy plan for 2015-2023 includes 3.2 GW of government projects, including 1.25 GW under BOO mechanisms and 920 MW as IPPs.

Wind Energy

Egypt enjoys excellent wind along the Gulf of Suez with an average wind speed of 10.5 m/sec. It is just one of 38 countries in the world with a published National Wind Atlas. Egypt’s wind generated power capacity is expected to reach 7 GW by 2022, making it an important contributor to the renewables energy mix.

Since 2001, a series of large-scale wind farms with a total capacity of 1.2 GW were established in cooperation with Germany (KFW), Denmark (DANIDA), Spain (Siemens Gamesa), and Japan (JICA).

In the Gulf of Suez, a 540 MW project is under construction, with another 580 MW project in financing.  In addition, a feasibility study is under way for a 200 MW project in the West Nile. More projects are under preparation in cooperation with Germany, AFD, EIB and the EU (200 MW), MASDAR (200 MW), Germany and AFD (200 MW), and Japan (200 MW).

The Egyptian government recently allocated around 7,845 square kilometers in the Gulf of Suez region and the Nile Banks for NREA to implement additional wind energy projects. The 262.5 MW Ras Ghareb wind farm project near the Gulf of Suez was inaugurated in December 2019. Executed by a consortium led by the French company Engie (Engie 40%, Toyota Tsusho 40%, and Orascom 20%), the farm will supply power to approximately 500,000 households. It is the first project in wind energy to follow the BOO (Build-Own-Operate) model. There is also Lekela’s West Bakr Wind Farm located Gulf of Suez and will generate 250 MW of clean energy. This project is a BOO (Build, Own, and Operate). 

Solar Energy

Egypt’s Solar Atlas states that Egypt is considered a “sun belt” country with 2,000 to 3,000 kWh/m2/year of direct solar radiation. The sun shines 9-11 hours a day from north to south, with few cloudy days.

The first solar thermal power plant was built in 2011 in Kuraymat. It has a total installed capacity of 140 MW, with the solar share of 20 MW based on parabolic-trough technology integrated with a combined-cycle power plant using natural gas. The power plant was financed from the Global Environmental Facility (GEF) and the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC). A 10 MW power plant has been operating in Siwa since 2015, and the remaining plants are expected to be implemented and operated consecutively.  The 37 square kilometer Benban Solar Park in Egypt’s Western Desert was completed in 2019 with financing provided by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the International Finance Corporation (IFC), and other international financial institutions. Composed of 32 individual plants, each producing 20-50 MW, the park generates almost 1.5 GW of power.

Leading Sub-Sectors

  • Wind turbines
  • Wind towers
  • Photovoltaic panels and related technologies
  • Concentrating solar power equipment and technologies

Opportunities

In 2012, the Egyptian government approved the Egyptian Solar Plan, which includes adding 3.5 GW (2.8 GW CSP and 700 MW PV) of solar energy by 2027. The Ministry of Electricity and Renewable Energy signed seven memoranda of understanding worth USD 500 million for solar and wind projects in Egypt. The government announced an interim target for the first regulatory period (2015-2017) to contract 4,300 MW of both solar and wind energy, and a feed-in tariff (FIT) which will allow Egypt to procure 4.3 GW of solar and wind power production by 2017. Its breakdown is as follows: 300 MW for small solar systems, 2,000 MW of medium- and large-size solar plants, and 2,000 MW of medium- and large-size wind plants.

According to the Wind and Solar Atlas, the East and West Nile areas have the potential to produce around 31,150 MW of wind power and 52,300 MW of solar. Egypt is also considering financing options to conduct feasibility studies for the following projects:

  • Solar-thermal power plant using CSP technology for both electricity generation and water desalination. Solar-thermal power plants for industrial purposes.
  • Designing a technical-financial mechanism to promote the use of solar water heaters in Egypt’s residential sector. Local manufacturing of renewable energy equipment.

Web Resources

Commercial Specialist in charge of the oil and gas sector: Dina Bissada