HE Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD & CEO of Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA), headed a delegation from DEWA to Milan, Italy. The trip is encouraging Italian companies to take part in clean and renewable energy projects in the UAE and the Middle East. The delegation included Waleed Salman, Executive Vice President of Strategy & Business Development at DEWA, Dr. Yousef Al Akraf, Executive Vice President of Business Support and Human Resources at DEWA, Stephane Le Gentil, CEO of Etihad Energy Services Company (Etihad ESCO), Mohammed Abdul Kareem Al Shamsi, Senior Manager of Sustainability and Climate Change at DEWA, and Ahmed Abdullah, Senior Manager of External Communications at DEWA.
In his speech during the delegation’s visit to Milan, Al Tayer highlighted DEWA’s projects and initiatives in clean and renewable energy to HE Nora Jomaa, Consul General to the United Arab Emirates to Milan, Italy, Dr. Marinella Loddo, Director of ITA Office in Milan, Dr Gianpaolo Bruno, Director of ITA Office in Dubai, Dr Marco Ferioli, Director of SACE Office in Dubai, representatives from SIMEST (Italian Government Project and Trade Finance Agency), representatives from PROMOS (Milan Chamber of Commerce’s Internationalisation Agency), and representatives from UBI Banca, in addition to a large number of representatives from the biggest Italian energy companies.
“The UAE and Italy have an important trade partnership, which distinguishes our relationship. Currently, around 10,000 Italians live in the UAE, making it the largest Italian community in the Middle East and North Africa. And this is the result of significant growth with 600 Italian companies in the UAE today, from 200 in 2011. The current bilateral trade between the UAE and Italy is USD8 billion, with exports being 90% of total foreign trade, which is USD7.1 billion” said Al Tayer.
“The foundations of our close ties were laid down by the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, Founder of the UAE, may his soul rest in peace. These have grown stronger under the leadership of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, and His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai,” added Al Tayer.
“Italy’s UBI Banca has opened a representative office in Dubai, to advise Italian small and medium enterprises working in the UAE. It has also signed a memorandum of understanding with Etihad Energy Services Company (Etihad ESCO) to support any Italian companies bidding for contracts for the energy-efficient retrofitting programme. Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) established Etihad ESCO to boost energy performance contracts by providing financial organisations the opportunity to invest in energy-efficient projects and obtain attractive returns, with the new regulatory framework ensuring that all risks are addressed. Financial institutions can become active partners in the sustainable development vision of Dubai, with plans to retrofit over 30,000 buildings to make them energy-efficient in the first phase of this project at a cost of 30 billion dollars, bringing returns of AED82 billion, and a net profit of AED52 billion, as we place great importance on environmental issues that contribute to the sustainable development of the UAE.”
“Through the UAE Vision 2021, we aim to become one of the best countries in the world by 2021. This in turn, strengthens the UAE’s global competitiveness, especially in renewable energy, and green economy technologies and products. Dubai has a comprehensive vision for a sustainable future which is pivotal to the success of building a green economy. In the past decade, Dubai Government has spearheaded a host of eco-operations, all of which aim to further integrate green economy policies into the Emirate’s development process,” added Al Tayer.
“In line with the Dubai Plan 2021, and the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050, we aim to be a global role model by supporting Dubai’s economic growth, having a secure energy supply, using energy efficiently, and meeting our environmental and sustainability goals, to make Dubai a global centre for clean energy and green economy.”
“Dubai is concerned with all activities related to energy sustainability. We realise the importance of reducing carbon emissions internationally. This can be clearly seen in our adopting various important initiatives that conserve resources and promote sustainability. The Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050 aims to provide 7% of Dubai’s total power output from clean energy sources by 2020. This target will increase to 25% by 2030 and 75% by 2050. A strategy with ambitious goals and five main pillars that consists of: infrastructure, legislation, funding, building capacities and skills, and an environmentally-friendly energy mix.”
“The first, Infrastructure, includes initiatives such as the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, which is the largest single-site project to generate electricity from solar energy in the world, with a planned capacity of 5,000 MW by 2030, and a total investment of USD13.6 billion (AED50 billion) to save approximately 6.5 million tonnes per annum in emissions,” said Al Tayer.
“Our strategy involves moving from a carbon-intensive economy to a greener one, through the Dubai Green Fund, which is worth USD27 billion, encouraging green investments and green growth. Through our Emirates Central Cooling Systems Corporation (Empower), the world’s largest district cooling services provider, we highlight the benefits of district cooling for both public and private sectors around the world, as there is an urgent need to consolidate efforts to address the challenges facing the energy sector and create new business opportunities in renewable and clean energy,” continued Al Tayer.
“The UAE Water Aid Foundation (Suqia) was launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum in 2015, to help millions of underprivileged people, who are in desperate need of drinkable water around the world. This initiative also has an annual USD1 million global award to find sustainable solutions to water scarcity around the world,” said Al Tayer.
“Dubai is working to achieve the Smart Dubai initiative launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, to make Dubai the smartest and the happiest city in the world. DEWA is doing this with three smart initiatives. The first, called Shams Dubai, installs solar panels in buildings and connect them to DEWA’s grid. Through this initiative we have launched many solar rooftop projects, among them is the recently-launched photovoltaic project which is one of the largest such projects on a single roof top in our M-station, with a total capacity of 1.5 MW,” added Al Tayer.
“The second is Smart applications through smart grids and meters, and the third is the EV Green Charger initiative, where we have already installed 100 electric vehicle charging stations across the Emirate to support the use of electric vehicles in Dubai. The smart grid is a key element in DEWA’s strategy to develop an advanced infrastructure to support Dubai becoming a smart city. Smart Grid also supports our target to reduce energy consumption by 30% by 2030. The smart grid strategy contains eleven programmes with a total investment of USD2 billion up to 2020. To contribute to organising the best World Expo in 2020 in Dubai, DEWA has allocated over AED2.6 billion (USD708 million) to support electricity, water, and renewable energy infrastructure projects, according to the highest international standards,” Al Tayer continued.
“In Dubai, we rely on Public Private Partnerships based on the Independent Power Producer (IPP) model to drive economic prosperity and increase investments in the energy sector, in line with Dubai Government’s strategy to enhance sustainable economic development in the Emirate and build and establish strong partnerships with the private sector,” added Al Tayer.
According to Al Tayer, IPPs are fast and active means of developing infrastructure projects, this is added value, as it gathers points of strength between public and private sectors.
“IPPs have become highly-effective means of achieving results and further driving innovation and diversity in the provision of public services. By making the most of public assets while generating jobs for the private sector, PPPs offer a win-win proposition for everyone. We implemented this successful model in the second phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park. DEWA signed a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) and a Shareholder Agreement with ACWA Power and TSK consortium for the 200MW expansion. Through this model, Dubai has set a world record by obtaining the lowest price globally, at USD 5.6 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh) for Shuaa Energy 1, the company established by DEWA to complete the project according to UAE legislation,” he added.
“Through this model, ACWA Power with its Chinese partner Harbin Electric Corporation, submitted the lowest bid at 4.5 US cents per kWh for the first and second phases of the 2,400MW Hassyan clean coal power plant. The plant will be the first-of-its-kind in the region and is fully-compliant with set international standards, adopting the use of ultra-supercritical technology,” he added.
DEWA has also awarded a contract for the turnkey construction of the Jebel Ali M-Station expansion. The project is worth AED1.47 billion (USD400 million) and will be completed in April 2018. M-Station is the newest and largest power production and desalination plant in the UAE, with a current total capacity of 2,060MW of electricity and 140 million imperial gallons of water per day. The expansion project includes new power generation units with a capacity of 700MW to be added to the current capacity of the station to eventually produce 2,760MW by 2018.
At the end of his speech, Al Tayer urged enhanced cooperation between Dubai and Italy in renewable energy, Al Tayer noted that there is much that Italian companies can offer in the UAE and the Middle East and North Africa.
The meeting also addressed the Dubai Solar Show 2016, organised in conjunction with the 18th Water, Energy, Technology, and Environment Exhibition (WETEX), under the umbrella of Green Week 2016. Al Tayer emphasised the importance of both events, which create a platform to facilitate communication, and enhance the sustainability of energy, water, the environment, green economy, sustainable development, and smart cities.