The government has prepared to launch the largest-ever project to develop solar energy systems in the Maldives as part of the efforts to become a carbon-neutral country by 2030.
Ministry of Environment, Climate Change and Technology contracted Malaysia-based Mega First Power Industries and Powerchina Huadong Engineering Corporation Limited to build 11MW solar energy systems on six islands. The contract signed in March 2022 is the largest project to establish solar energy systems in the country’s history under the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) and the lowest rate ever received for such a model. The PPA rate has gone down from USD0.25 per kWh in 2011 to just USD0.98 per kWh and the estimated savings from the contract are expected to be around USD3 million per year. The power grids will be upgraded and battery energy storage systems will also be installed in these islands by 2023.
Solar energy systems will be installed in Eydhafushi in Baa Atoll, Hinnavaru in Lhaviyani Atoll, Thinadhoo in Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll, Kulhudhuffushi City, Fuvahmulah City, and Addu City. The project is part of the government's implementation of the Accelerating Sustainable Private Investments in Renewable Energy (ASPIRE) project, conducted with the support of the World Bank.
The project supports the aim of the administration to minimise the dependency on oil by increasing the amount of power produced from renewable energy sources. The environment ministry has assured the expense of oil will be significantly reduced following the completion of the project.