First Solar, Inc. reported that it is supplying over 860,000 thin-film modules to power a 100 megawatt (MW)AC utility-scale photovoltaic (PV) solar power plant that Zorlu Enerji developed in Pakistan. The Independent Power Producer (IPP) facility, which serves as part of the Quaid-e-Azam Solar Park in Pakistan’s Punjab province, is scheduled to be completed and then connected to the electricity grid by the first half of 2018.
Once completed, the plant will increase Zorlu Enerji’s installed capacity in Pakistan to about 156.4MW. Zorlu Enerji’s portfolio in Pakistan includes a 56.4MW wind farm completed in 2013. The new solar facility will produce an about 180 million kilowatt-hours of electricity annually, enough power for approximately 140,000 average homes. The facility will produce the electricity for Pakistan’s Central Power Purchasing Agency under a 25-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA).
Zorlu Holding to Sell First Solar Modules in Parts of Middle East Including Pakistan and Asia
In February this year, First Solar and Zorlu Holding signed a joint sales agreement in which Zorlu Solar will become a primary distributor of First Solar’s modules in Afghanistan, Albania, Turkey, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Georgia, Cyprus, Kosovo, Macedonia, Pakistan, Ukraine, Romania, Serbia, and Turkmenistan, and the Commonwealth of Independent States. In addition to marketing PV modules in these countries, Zorlu Solar is taking on its own project development of powering its own successful projects with First Solar technology.
“We are confident that First Solar’s advanced PV modules will thrive in Bahawalpur’s desert conditions, delivering over eight percent more energy than conventional crystalline-silicon panels, and enabling our successful bid for a PPA,” said Sinan Ak, Chief Executive Officer of Zorlu Enerji.
“This project is part of a pivotal move by Pakistan to secure its energy independence by harnessing its solar resource, and we are proud to be playing an enabling role,” said Stefan Degener, First Solar’s head of Business Development for Europe and Africa.