The Abu Dhabi Department of Energy (DoE) – Host Sponsor of the 24th World Energy Congress, taking place in Abu Dhabi on September 9-12, 2019 – has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the State Grid Corporation of China (SGCC) at the DoE’s Pavilion at the event.
The agreement sets the stage for a strategic partnership between the two entities, one that seeks to support the energy sector in Abu Dhabi to transition towards more efficient consumption practices as the emirate expands its clean and renewable energy offering.
DoE Chairman His Excellency Eng. Awaidha Murshed Al Marar signed the MoU with Kou Wei, Executive Chairman of SGCC. The agreement outlines both parties’ respective roles in implementing the strategic partnership signed by the leaderships of the two countries in 2018, where the energy sector was a central theme, in addition to economic, commercial, and cultural cooperation, and collaboration to boost technological innovation.
The MoU lays the groundwork for future partnerships where the DoE acts as a catalyst for the energy sector across the emirate, in cooperation with companies owned by the State Grid Corporation of China. This, in turn, promotes collaboration and the exchange of expertise, in line with initiatives launched in Abu Dhabi to promote energy efficiency, innovation, and a strategic shift towards clean and renewable energy sources.
The agreement calls for collaboration in conducting feasibility studies to render the energy system more efficient; developing facilities for producing and storing clean energy that complement the existing power grid; implement the gas-insulated underground cables and powerlines project; connect the power grid with those of other emirates and countries around the region; improve the overall quality of electrical grids; utilise district cooling systems; establish and develop advanced infrastructure for metres; and provide training to develop skillsets among the workforce operating the electric grid.
Commenting on the MoU, H.E. Al Marar asserted that the Emirate of Abu Dhabi is dedicated to building an advanced energy sector that is rooted in efficiency, environmental and financial sustainability, and supply security. “Forging strategic ties with international pioneers in the energy sector boosts Abu Dhabi’s ability to achieve its strategic aspirations, and implement initiatives to transform the sector,” H.E. said.
“Our strategy in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi relies on sustainable, science-based projects that empower us to fulfil our environmental commitments and ensure economic growth. Considering the tremendous success China has achieved in terms of energy technology, we look forward to this new partnership with the State Grid Corporation of China to lay the foundation for further collaborations in the future,” the DoE Chairman concluded.
For his part, Kou Wei, Executive Chairman of SGCC, State Grid Corporation of China, said: “With the UAE’s strategic goals and ambitions for the energy sector on one hand, and China’s expertise and advanced technology on the other, there is always room for collaboration among the two countries to achieve their common objectives. The MoU we have signed is a starting point for more joint initiatives and projects in the future.”
The UAE-China trade and investment ties have undergone tremendous growth in recent years, where the mutual official visits between the leaders of both countries played an instrumental role in strengthening these bonds. Chinese company JinkoSolar Holding was one of two partners working with the Abu Dhabi Government on developing the Noor Abu Dhabi solar power plant, of which the Abu Dhabi Government owns 60%, while the other 40% is owned by JinkoSolar, as well as Japanese company Marubeni Corp.
China’s National Energy Administration had announced that the country will be implementing a series of procedures to promote clean energy, including dedicating vast expanses for solar and wind farms, in an effort to generate 20% of China’s energy needs from non-fossil-fuel sources by 2030.