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MENA Solar Brief

Solar Update

The UAE began actively promoting the development of solar power generation in April of 2008. Both emirates have ambitious initial targets: Abu Dhabi wants solar to account for 7% of its output by 2020, while Dubai is aiming for 5% by 2030. Abu Dhabi has launched projects using both photovoltaic (PV) and concentrated solar power (CSP) technology, while Dubai is currently focusing on PV systems.

While still producing less than 1% of total electricity in the UAE, solar initiatives have advanced considerably since the year 2000. Facilities in the Emirates currently account for more than half of the solar power capacity in the GCC and the Levant.

Key Contacts

Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (DEWA)
Formed in January, 1992, DEWA provides electricity for more than 600,000 customers in Dubai. In an effort to meet ever-growing demand, DEWA seeks to establish a diversified energy mix by 2030, generating 71% of its power from natural gas, 12% nuclear, 12% clean coal, and 5% solar energy.
Dubai Supreme Council of Energy (DSCE)
The Dubai Supreme Council of Energy (DSCE) was formed in August 2009 to ensure that the Emirate’s growing economy will have sustainable energy while preserving the environment. The Authority is developing alternative and renewable energy sources for the Emirate, while increasing energy efficiency to reduce demand.
Abu Dhabi Electicity and Water Company (ADWEA)
The Abu Dhabi Water & Electricity Authority researches and develops ways to more efficiently produce, distribute and consume water and electricity. ADWEA is owned by the Abu Dhabi Government, but is financially and administratively independent. In 1998, ADWEA changed the nature of its organization by establishing our first private public partnership. The organizations’ programs and initiatives focus on sustainability, and plan for growth while ensuring economic and environmental balance.
International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA)
The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) is an intergovernmental organisation that supports countries in their transition to a sustainable energy future, and serves as the principal platform for international cooperation, a centre of excellence, and a repository of policy, technology, resource and financial knowledge on renewable energy. With a mandate from countries around the world, IRENA encourages governments to adopt enabling policies for renewable energy investments, provides practical tools and policy advice to accelerate renewable energy deployment, and facilitates knowledge sharing and technology transfer to provide clean, sustainable energy for the world’s growing population.
Launched by the Abu Dhabi leadership in 2006 with a mandate to advance renewable energy through education, R&D, investment and commercialization, Masdar plays a key role in securing the emirate’s continued leadership in the evolving global energy market. A wholly-owned subsidiary of the Abu Dhabi Government-owned Mubadala Development Company, Masdar comprises three business units—including Masdar Capital, Masdar Clean Energy and Masdar City—and is complemented by Masdar Institute, an independent, research-driven graduate university.
Emirates Solar Industry Association (ESIA)
The Solar GCC Alliance is in the process of forming a UAE affiliate, to be known as the Emirates Solar Industry Association (ESIA). This organization will seek to create new solar energy business and employment opportunities in the Emirates, and enable collaboration opportunities throughout the GCC region.
To get involved, email for membership details.
Marketing & Events Manager
Tel: +971 50 2450388

Major Solar Projects

Upcoming Events

SNEC PV POWER EXPO 2015, Shanghai, China

Event Date: April 28, 2015

This exhibition is an ideal platform for PV companies and institutions at home and abroad to show their wisdom and products; it is also a good communication platform for scientists and elites in the global industry to spark inspiration and make creation; and it is a great booster for people inside and outside the industry to figure out current situation, remain confident, pay more attention to this strategic emerging industry, and encourage...Read more >>>

Latest News

Arzon Announces uModule Platform

Published on: February 20, 2015

The California-based Arzon Solar team is excited to unveiling the uModule CPV platform. Unlike most CPV products, which are targeted specifically to the utility-scale segment of the solar market, uModule is designed to empower products in every market segment of solar, including industrial, commercial, off grid, remote, mobile, utility and as an alternative to rooftop. Click here to learn more about the uModule platform on the Arzon Solar blog....Read more >>>

The power business: Interview with Alfanar Construction Executive Manager T&D & Power Business Wassim Mallouhi

Published on:

In this exclusive interview with SolarPV.TV at the World Future Energy Summit 2015 in Abu Dhabi, Wassim Mallouhi of Alfanar Construction talks about his company’s work in Saudi Arabia, including their participation in a tender for solar CSP projects. Watch the interview from...Read more >>>

The complexities of MENA solar markets: SolarPV.TV Exclusive interview with SASIA Executive Director

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In this interview at the World Future Energy Summit 2015, SASIA Executive Director Browning Rockwell addresses the complexities of solar markets in the Middle East and North Africa region, looking at the different factors driving solar adoption for different nations, the role of development banks, and more. Watch the interview at...Read more >>>

CPV’s Golden Opportunity in the MENA Region

Published on: February 11, 2015

No solar technology can claim to offer what concentrated photovoltaics (CPV) does, be it the superlative efficiencies in high-DNI regions, or zero-water usage in passively cooled systems. Just like concentrated solar power, CPV works best in regions with high Direct Normal Irradiance (DNI), especially with values above 2,000 kWh/m2. And just like standard flat-plate photovoltaics, CPV has the benefit of modularity, thus can be designed to meet...Read more >>>

DEWA releases standards for rooftop PV systems

Published on: February 1, 2015

Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (DEWA) has released the standards for installing solar photovoltaic (PV) panels on buildings in Dubai and has invited manufacturers to submit their eligibility applications. HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Executive Council, issued resolution No. (46) for 2014, allowing customers to install photovoltaic (PV) panels for the production of...Read more >>>