The ambitious North African-based Concentrated Solar Project (CSP) by TuNur said it will not discourage the success of UK-based solar developments, despite TuNur’s size or plan to apply for funding from the British government via contracts for difference (CfDs).
Daniel Rich, a director of TuNur told Solar Power Portal: “The project will provide power to an estimated 2.5 million UK homes, so it will be a significant part of the energy mix, but will still be just one of the many different technologies in the energy mix.”
Now that the British government redesigned CfDs to allow foreign-based projects to compete for project subsidy, some British-based developers have raised concerns about the negative impacts such competition may bring to the UK solar industry. Solarcentury told the BBC yesterday the last thing they need is the added uncertainty that could arise from opening the CfD scheme to foreign projects.
In response to such concerns, Rich said: “We wouldn’t be deterring the ability of the UK to invest in local renewables like PV.”
Rich added that the TuNur project will also positively impact the job market in not only Tunisia, the location sited for the project, but also in the UK. Rich said there would be significant job creation for the UK, especially for financial, legal, and engineering services.
“We are in discussion with some UK engineering firms to be part of the project, especially for the development, but also to be involved in the construction and operation,” said Rich.
The significant number of jobs in Tunisia that would arise from the project is a big part of the project Rich said, as TuNur hopes that more jobs in the North African region would improve its socio-economic position.
Rich said: “Any stability added to that region is beneficial for Europe and the UK.”