Masdar, France ink alliance on green energy
Abu Dhabi, January 15, 2013
Masdar, Abu Dhabi’s renewable energy company, has signed a joint declaration with France paving the way for Masdar to work closely with French firms on the advancement of sustainable energy.
The agreement was signed in the presence of French President Francois Hollande at the World Future Energy Summit (WFES), which is running from January 15 to 17 at Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre.
It was signed by Delphine Batho, French Minister of Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy, and Dr Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, CEO of Masdar.
Potential avenues for collaboration under the Joint Declaration include facilitating the co-development of new commercially viable technologies, as well as exchanging expertise, human capital development and sharing experience with policies and regulations. In addition, the agreement opens the door for joint research in renewable energy projects and sustainability technologies while strengthening existing cooperation on the Global Atlas of Renewable Energy.
“France and the UAE are equally committed to making a concerted effort to address energy security and sustainability,” said Dr Al Jaber. “The two countries are making bold investments in large-scale renewable energy projects and developing carbon reduction strategies.”
The UAE and France already have strong partnerships in the renewable energy sector. Total, the French oil and gas company, and Masdar have partnered to build Shams 1, the 100-megawatt concentrated solar power project in the Western Region of Abu Dhabi, which is the largest solar power project in the Middle East. A third partner, the Spanish renewables company Abengoa, also has a stake in the project.
“This Joint Declaration builds on our already strong relationship and enables us to further explore new collaborative opportunities in the clean energy sector,” added Dr Al Jaber.
The UAE has played a leadership role in developing and deploying new clean energy technologies in recent years.
“Long a leader in conventional energy, the UAE’s ambitious turn to renewable energy is significant. This willingness should inspire more countries,” said Batho.
“France and Masdar already have a robust working relationship in the energy sector. This Joint Declaration lays the necessary groundwork for us to learn even more from each other and continue to bring forward promising large-scale renewable energy projects,” added Batho.
To tackle climate change and to boost the national economy, France is also making a strategic move to invest in renewable energy. Today, France’s wind energy capacity ranks sixth in the world and the nation has a target to produce 23 percent of its energy from renewable sources by 2020.
President Hollande delivered a keynote speech at the opening ceremony of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week, the largest gathering on sustainability in the history of the Middle East. While at the gathering, he also visited the exhibition stand of Masdar.
WFES is one of the anchor events of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week, taking place in the UAE capital from January 13-17. – TradeArabia News Service
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