The Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) and the Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar) have achieved financial closure on the 1.8GW sixth phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The park’s capacity will exceed 5GW by 2030.

As the preferred bidder, Masdar will construct and operate the sixth phase. It is expected to cost Dh5.5bn.

This phase will use solar photovoltaic panels and is based on the independent power producer model.

The sixth phase of the project, spanning 20km², will provide clean energy to 540,000 residences and reduce carbon emissions by 2.36 million tonnes annually.

DEWA managing director and CEO Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer stated: “DEWA is implementing the sixth phase of the solar park in cooperation with Masdar […] using the latest solar photovoltaic bifacial technologies with single-axis tracking.

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“The current production capacity at the solar park is 2,627MW and the total capacity under construction is 2,033MW. The 1,800MW sixth phase of the solar park will see the total production capacity increase to 4,660MW by 2026. DEWA will have around 27% of the generation mix sourced from clean energy sources by 2030.”

DEWA selected Masdar for the project’s construction and operation shortly after Masdar was announced as the preferred bidder in August 2023.

This phase has achieved a levelised cost of energy of $0.016215 per kilowatt-hour.

The sixth phase is owned by Shuaa Energy 4, a joint venture company in which DEWA holds a 60% stake and Masdar the remaining 40%.

The project’s financing is supported by a consortium of banks including the Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, the Commercial Bank of Dubai, the First Abu Dhabi Bank, HSBC and Warba Bank.

The expansion follows the inauguration of the 900MW fifth phase by DEWA in June 2023. It can supply clean energy to 270,000 households while avoiding 1.18 million tonnes of carbon emissions annually.