The UAE and France have announced a new partnership to fund and deploy renewable energy projects in developing countries, state news agency WAM reported.
As per the deal, the UAE’s Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) and France’s L’Agence Francaise de Developpement will jointly finance renewable energy projects on concessional terms, a joint statement said.
The countries are looking to announce their first project this year and are currently reviewing project proposals in the Middle East.
“Renewable energy resources are available in abundance in developing countries, and are now a cost-effective tool for sustainable development. UAE and French assistance will help countries to move up the learning curve, so that they can deploy projects faster in the coming years,” said Mohammed Al Suwaidi, director-general of ADFD.
The UAE also signed a similar deal last year with New Zealand to fund power projects, especially in Pacific Island countries.
The projects were to be financed by a $50 million grant from the UAE-Pacific Partnership Fund and a $54 million pledge from the New Zealand government.
The UAE has been actively funding renewable energy projects across developing nations, mainly through its aid vehicle ADFD. It has mobilised aid worth $700 million since 2009 for renewable projects in locations ranging from Mauritania to Samoa.
In 2014, the Gulf country provided funding worth $41 million for six clean energy projects that have a joint capacity of 35 megawatts, officials said at a press conference during the on-going Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week.
The UAE is expected to continue the funding this year via ADFD and International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). The agencies are poised to provide $57 million in concessional loans for five renewable projects in Argentina, Cuba, Iran, Mauritania and St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
The UAE also has a number of commercial renewable energy projects across the globe.
The Abu Dhabi-based clean energy company Masdar recently announced new wind projects in the UK, Jordan and Oman. The new projects will complement its existing 1GW portfolio of projects in operation.