Iraq’s long awaited first 755MW solar power bid round has proven competitive. While the bids don’t compare with recent record-low tariffs in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Qatar they are still extremely cost competitive with many under US¢4/kWh.

The two largest projects - 225MW Iskandariya PV south of Baghdad and 300MW Karbala PV - are expected to be awarded to a consortium consisting of Egypt’s Orascom, Norway’s Scatec and Iraq’s Al Bilal Group. Karbala PV is poised to set a pricing benchmark for Iraq going forward, with the lowest bid submitted at US¢3.61. (CONTINUED - 1085 WORDS)