The Tunisian-French Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CTFCI) held, on Wednesday, a debate on the Tunisian Solar Plan (TSP).
Secretary of State in charge of Renewable Energies and Food Industries Abdelaziz Rassaa, who conducted the debate, made an outline of the TSP.
This plan includes forty complementary projects involving solar energy, wind energy, energy efficiency, power interconnection with Italy, and manufacturing of photovoltaic panels…
The TSP will mobilise total investments of 2000 million euros (3950 million dinars), 1390 million euros of which (2746 million dinars) paid by private operators.
TSP will allow an additional energy saving of 660 ktoe (kiloton oil equivalent) and a spared amount of CO2 estimated at 1.3 million tons a year.
The TSP, in harmony with other international strategies including the Mediterranean Solar Plan (MSP), materialises Tunisia’s ambition to become an international platform for the production and exportation of solar power.
It is worth noting in this regard that a Tunisian company, along with four others from
Morocco, Spain, France and Italy will join the Desertec solar power project that aims to supply 15 percent of Europe’s power by 2050, according to chief executive Paul van Son .
Founded by 12 mostly German companies last year, the 400 billion euro ($549.2 billion) project will use mirrors to harness the sun’s rays to produce steam and drive turbines for electricity generation in the Sahara region.
The new participants will be announced in March, van Son said, adding there was no shortage of companies interested in joining the Desertec Industrial Initiative (DII) which was created last year.
“The more the merrier,” said van Son, 56, who before his appointment to lead DII in October had headed the European Federation of Energy Traders.
“We want to make it more of an international project,” he said, addressing the concern that it has until now been mostly a German initiative with 10 German firms, but only one Spanish and one Algerian company on board.
“With the new partners we’ll have a broader base. That’s important for acceptance. It’s important that we have companies involved from MENA countries (Middle East and North Africa).”
The 40-year plan to power Europe with Sahara sunlight has gained momentum, he said. The world’s most ambitious solar power project would advance in stages with the first phases operational within a decade.
Fields of mirrors in the desert would gather solar rays to boil water, turning turbines to electrify a new carbon-free network linking Europe, the Middle East and North Africa.
Twelve member companies — including Siemens, E.ON , RWE and Deutsche Bank — back the initiative launched by Munich Re last July