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Algeria unveils winners of its 2 GW solar auction, Chinese firms dominate

The Algerian energy company Sonelgaz has unveiled the winners of its 2 GW auction for the construction of 15 solar PV projects with capacities ranging from 80 MW to 220 MW, spread over twelve Wilayas in Algeria. Chinese companies dominated the auction, as they will develop nine of the projects (1,550 MW).

Five projects totalling 780 MW were awarded to a Chinese consortium regrouping China International Water & Electric Corporation (CWE) and China Nuclear Industry Huaxing Construction (HXCC). The consortium will develop a 220 MW solar plant at Batmet in the M’sila Wilaya, a 200 MW plant at Gueltet Sidi Saad in the Laghouat Wilaya, a 200 MW plant at Douar El Maa in the El Oued Wilaya, an 80 MW project at Abadla in the Bechar Wilaya and an 80 MW project in the Ouled Djelal Wilaya.

Other Chinese companies were also selected: Shanxi Installation Group will develop a 220 MW solar plant at Ouled Fadel in the Batna Wilaya, while CSCEC will develop a 200 MW plant at Tendla in the El M’ghaier Wilaya. PowerChina NTL-SinoHydro will build a 200 MW plant at Laghrous and PowerChina Zhongnan Engineering Corporation will build a 150 MW plant at Khanguet Sidi Nadji, both located in the Biskra Wilaya.

The rest of the projects have been awarded to Algerian companies, sometimes in partnership with foreign groups. Cosider Canalisation-Fimer SPA will develop two solar plants at Kenadsa in the Bechar Wilaya (120 MW) and in the Toggourt Wilaya (150 MW). Ozgun Insaat-Zergoun will develop an 80 MW plant at Guerrara in the Ghardaia Wilaya and Eurl Hamdi will build two 80 MW plants in the Bordj Bou Arréridj and El Oued Wilayas.

The totality of the projects will be developed for an amount of DZD171bn (US$1.2bn), in a completion timeframe ranging from 7 to 16 months. Algeria’s 2 GW solar auction was launched in February 2023 and Sonelgaz shortlisted 77 offers in July 2023. In 2022, solar accounted for around 1.4% of Algeria’s installed capacity (with 460 MW) and less than 1% of its power mix (with 642 GWh).