On Monday 15th June, Bracewell & Giuliani, Khalid Anwer & Co and the Middle East Solar Industry Association hosted a webinar - Pakistan's Renewable FiT: What Developers and Lenders Need to Know, which was attended by sponsors, lenders and other key stakeholders.
A feature of the solar industry in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia regions is that certain countries have emerged and moved quickly and assuredly to the forefront of discussion and interest. This movement has largely been as a consequence of attractive feed-in tariffs which have been offered to early stage participants. In this respect, recent contenders have included Jordan, whose Round One projects recently achieved financial close and whose competitively tendered Round Two results have just been announced; Egypt, whose first round of projects have recently been allocated land and which are moving forward with a proposed date for financial close by the end of this year; and, most recent, Pakistan.
Pakistan is a new and emerging market for the solar power industry. Pakistan is a country with 196 million people and has a huge demand for power and, despite challenges ahead, is largely being tipped as the next big opportunity for utility scale solar PV projects in the broader Middle East region, following its impressive track record in independent power projects. In January of this year, feed-in tariff rates were approved by the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority with rates set according to province. These tariffs were discussed on the webinar.
A distinguished panel discussed the FiT programme, including both legal experts and officials from the Government of Pakistan. Attendees contributed to the successful discussion by submitting a significant number of questions, which demonstrates the appetite by the developer and investor community in gaining a greater knowledge and understanding of the market. Due to time constraints not all questions were answered during the webinar, however, representatives from both Bracewell and Khalid Anwer & Co will prepare a circular to be sent to all participants responding to those questions, together with further details of the programme. In addition, planning is also already underway for follow-up events highlighting this important market.
A recording of this webinar is available here.