Push to meet EU coal-to-solar target sparks major acquisition
27 Jun 2018
Sun Investment Group (SIG) has acquired 15% of Poland’s solar energy market, in anticipation of the country making a major push to increase its dependence on renewable sources.
SIG, which has UK and continental offices, has teamed up with Lithuania’s E-Energija and the Spanish I+D Energias with plans to invest €40 million in building solar plants.
The World Health Organisation says Poland has 33 of the 50 most polluted cities in Europe. The country is one of the most dependent on fossil fuels with 93% of its electricity deriving from coal-fired thermal power plants.
However, Poland’s government is keen to meet the EU target of ensuring 20% of energy comes from renewable sources by 2020 and has set up contract auctions to boost interest from investors in the market.
Its target would place the country ahead of France, the UK and Germany, where current solar energy accounts for 2.5%, 3.6% and 6.1% respectively of total energy mix.
A 42 MWp portfolio of solar projects was secured under Poland's current support system for renewable energy. SIG plans to expand its Polish holdings to 250 MWp by the end of 2020.
“An investor who wins the auction knows the price that will be paid for the energy produced by his plant, and this price will remain stable for 15 years. This support scheme is regulated by the state, which reassures investors and takes away uncertainty and high risk,” said Sun Investment Group CEO Deividas Varabauskas.