Solar Sector Expected To Recover With Stronger Growth In Coming Years

PEB reNIKOLA Gebeng Solar Farm

Research house, Fitch Solutions Country Risk & Industry Research has revised its solar forecasts for Malaysia and has expected the sector to recover from 2021 with stronger growth over the coming years.

“We now expect solar capacity to reach over 4GW by 2030, from an estimated 996MW as of end-2020,” the research house said in a commentary.

The forecast revision stems largely from the continuation and success of solar tenders in the country. As of March 2021, the government has now shortlisted 30 winning bidders, with a total combined capacity of 823MW.

These projects are expected to enter commercial operations in 2022 and 2023.

“Winning bid prices have also continued to register a slight decline from the previous auction and ranged from as low as RM0. 1850/kWh for 10-30MW projects and RM0.1768/kWh to RM0.1970/kWh for 30-50MW projects. These prices are already competitive with gas-fired power in Malaysia. Given that these tenders have continued to register ongoing success, we believe that the government will continue to launch more solar tenders over the coming years, possibly with larger target capacities, particularly as it seeks to revitalise the economy following the effects of the pandemic,” the commentary stated.

The Sultan of Malaysia’s Johor State has also announced the development of a 450MW Sultan Ibrahim Solar Park in Pengerang, which will be the largest in the region upon fruition.

The ground-breaking ceremony for the project is expected to be held on March 23 and is targeted to be commissioned in 2023. The project will support the 2030 Johor Sustainable Development Plan and mark its first investment into large-scale renewable energy.

The research house has also highlighted that Putrajaya’s commitment to the domestic renewables sector has strengthened in recent years and a number of regulations and financing incentives have been put in place to encourage investment into the sector.

The Government had extended the Green Investment Tax Allowance and Green Income Tax Exemption incentives to 2025, based on the expanded qualifying list of green assets from last year.

Solar projects in the country have expanded in recent weeks showing increased interest from several states across the nation.

KPower Berhad has been shortlisted by the Energy Commission (EC) to develop a large scale solar photovoltaic plant of 50 megawatts in Pekan, Pahang through competitive bidding for the fourth cycle of the Large-Scale Solar (LSS4).

Last week, solar photovoltaic system specialist, Solarvest Holdings Berhad (Solarvest) was among the successful bidders in the [email protected] programme shortlisted to provide cumulative capacity of 50 megawatts (MW) of solar-powered electricity via three large-scale solar farms.

The solar farm project has a capacity of 25MW will be based in Manjung, Perak. This is followed by a 13MW solar farm to be constructed in Kuala Selangor and another 12MW solar farm in Manjung, Perak.

Additionally, since its launch in October 2019, UOB’s U-Solar programme has facilitated the generation of close to 160 gigawatt hours of solar power across ASEAN, reducing more than 77,200 tonnes CO₂-equivalent (tCO₂e) in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

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