UAE cabinet approves Israel peace treaty

20 Oct 2020
UAE cabinet approves Israel peace treaty

Peace agreement and full diplomatic relations between the UAE and Israel is likely to lead to significant operations for cooperation and trade in the energy and utilities sectors including renewable energy


The UAE cabinet has approved the resolution to endorse the Abraham Accords Peace Agreement and full diplomatic relations between the UAE and Israel.

The cabinet, chaired by HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum, vice president and prime minister of UAE and ruler of Dubai, also directed the initiation of constitutional procedures to issue a federal decree ratifying the peace accord.

The Abraham Accords peace agreement was signed between the UAE and Israel in Washington on 15 September.

The peace deal is set to usher in significant cooperation in the energy and utilities sectors.

In the hydrocarbons sector, the UAE is Opec’s third largest producer of oil and Israel is a significant gas producer. Trade between the two countries is likely to be heavily based on the oil and gas reserves of each country.

The drive for renewable energy is also likely to offer significant opportunities for trade and investments between the two nations. The UAE is targeting for renewables to contribute to at least 44 per cent of its energy production by 2050, with both Abu Dhabi and Dubai pushing ahead with some of the world’s largest solar energy projects.

In July, the appointed developers signed the power purchase agreement (PPA) for the planned 2GW Al-Dhafra solar independent power producer (IPP) project in Abu Dhabi.

Energy & Utilities reported in April that a consortium led by France’s EDF and China’s Jinko Power had submitted the lowest tariff for the planned 2GW photovoltaic (PV) IPP following a competitive bidding process. The levelised cost of electricity (LCOE) tariff of $cents1.35/kWh set a new world record for utility-scale PV solar production.

The EDF/Jinko Power consortium will hold a 40 per cent stake in the special purpose vehicle (SPV) set up to develop and operate the plant, with Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (Taqa) and Masdar holding the remaining 60 per cent.

The Al-Dhafra IPP will be Abu Dhabi’s second major PV solar scheme.

In February 2017, the emirate awarded a contract to a consortium led by Japan’s Marubeni Corporation and China’s Jinko Solar to develop a 1,177MW PV solar IPP at Sweihan, the world’s largest single-site solar project. The Sweihan IPP was fully commissioned in June 2019. The PV solar panels for the project were manufactured by Jinko Solar.

In September, a consortium led by Saudi Arabia’s Acwa Power reached financial close for the planned $564m 900MW fifth phase of the Mohammed bin rashid al-Maktoum solar park in Dubai.

The MBR solar park is planned to have a total installed capacity of 5,000MW by 2030. The park currently has 1,013MW of PV solar capacity under operation, with 1,850MW of PV and concentrated solar power (CSP) capacity currently under construction.

Solar energy accounted for about 5 per cent of Israel's power production in 2019, with Tel-Aviv seeking to increase this to 30 per cent by 2030.



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