An estimated 40 gigawatts (GW) of new wind power capacity is expected to be added in the Middle East and Africa by 2026, according to new analysis from MAKE Consulting.
Leading renewable energy industry analysts MAKE Consulting’s new report, 2017 Middle East and Africa Wind Power Outlook, states that the wind energy sector is set to take off in the region, with a projected 40 GW of new capacity to be installed from 2017 to 2026.
The report details that this projected growth will be fuelled by “tremendous resources”, growing power demand, falling costs and “an increase in experience and best practices across the value chain”.
This will result in the gradual reduction of wind power’s Levelised Cost of Electricity (LCOE), falling 15 per cent between 2017 and 2022.
Last year, the Middle East and Africa region added a total of 676 megawatts (MW) of new wind power capacity, down slightly from the 682 MW added in 2015, MAKE said.
The region’s cumulative wind power capacity now stands at around 4.3 GW, up from just 1 GW at the end of 2010.
MAKE noted that 91.3 per cent of the cumulative capacity in 2016, or 3.8 GW, was installed in Africa, led by South Africa with 1.5 GW, followed by Morocco and Egypt with 892 MW and 755 MW respectively.
Installed capacity in the Middle East therefore accounts for around 8.7 per cent of the region’s total cumulative capacity – with 369 MW installed, primarily in Jordan and Iran.
The implementation of auctions in a number of countries in the region, including South Africa, Egypt, Morocco and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), has resulted in some of the cheapest bidding prices globally for wind and solar energy projects.
The Middle East Solar Industry Association (MESIA) report, Solar Outlook Report 2017, released earlier this year detailed that the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region has more than 5.7 GW of solar energy capacity in the pipeline.
2016 was a record-breaking year for solar in the Middle East due to record low tariffs below $0.0245 per kilowatt hour (kWh) in September 2016.
According to the report, eight countries in the region have more than 4,050 MW of solar photovoltaic (PV) power capacity under development this year, bringing the total solar power capacity in the pipeline to over 5.7 GW.