Egypt’s investment and int’l cooperation minister Sahar Nasr and World Bank group President David Malpass during a visit to Benban Solar Park in Aswan (Photo Courtesy of MOIC)
Egypt said its Benban solar field in Aswan, set to be largest in the world upon completion at 1.8 GW total capacity, is set to operate at full capacity in 2019.
The World Bank group's new president, who toured the solar field, praised the country’s reforms in energy.
In a statement, Egypt’s investment ministry said that the WB group chief David Malbas visited the solar park with Investment Minister Sahar Nasr, Social Solidarity Minister Ghana Wali, and other WB officials.
The reforms in energy made by Egypt have "opened a door for strong investments by the private sector," Malbas said during his first visit to Egypt as head of the group.
Nasr said that the project comes as the country is taking unprecedented steps to create a modern legislative framework to attract foreign investments.
The project was granted the best project award by the WB group last March, the first time Egypt won such an award.
The WB's International Financial Corporation has provided $653 million for the construction of the installation.
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development is also providing financing for 16 projects in Benban as part of its $500 million framework for financing renewable energy in Egypt, the bank said in 2017.
The Benban project was decreed by President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi in 2015 and allocated a 37-square-kilometer plot.
Egypt aims to increase its use of renewable energy to 22 percent of all domestically produced energy by 2020 and up to 42 percent by 2035.