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UAE, Kazakhstan to explore opportunities in the energy sector

Samruk-Kazyna, the sovereign wealth fund of Kazakhstan, said on December 1 it has signed a long-term strategic agreement with Abu Dhabi Development Holding Company, doing business as ADQ, and Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA) to explore opportunities in the energy sector in the central Asian country.

As part of the agreement, ADQ and its portfolio companies may invest up to $6 billion into energy projects in Kazakhstan and the entities will partner to create a holding company that will oversee and effectively manage any acquired assets, the companies said in a press release.

“This is a historic announcement that will see Samruk-Kazyna partnering with two established leaders in the energy sector to advance greenfield power projects in Kazakhstan and unlock opportunities to further our progress on clear energy transition,” Samruk-Kazyna CEO Almasadam Satkaliyev said. “Beside from developing the greenfield power projects the joint company will also work on modernisation of the traditional electric power sector by shifting to the gas and green energy sources. We are delighted to be working with both ADQ and TAQA to build energy infrastructure that will power the nation and improve Kazakhstan’s energy self-sufficiency and leadership,” he added.

ADQ and TAQA will explore three greenfield power projects, including a 2 GW solar photovoltaic (PV) power plant, a 2 GW wind power plant and a 1 GW combine-cycle gas fired power plant in Kazakhstan. ADQ and TAQA would jointly hold a 51% stake in each project with Samruk-Kazyna holding the remaining interest. TAQA would also be involved in the operations and maintenance of all three projects, once operational.

The agreement was signed by Satkaliyev, ADQ CEO and TAQA Chairman Mohamed Hassan Alsuwaidi and TAQA’s Group CEO and Managing Director Jasim Husain Thabet.

Alsuwaidi noted that his company, as one of the region’s largest investment companies and with Abu Dhabi’s largest portfolio of energy and utilities investments, is actively seeking new investment opportunities where it can add value while contributing positively to the energy ecosystem. “ADQ, alongside our portfolio company, TAQA, is proud to work alongside Samruk-Kazyna to bring our sector expertise to Kazakhstan with these world-class projects that will further enhance Abu Dhabi’s place globally as a major energy player,” he said.

For his part, Thabet said TAQA is pleased to partner with ADQ and Samruk-Kazyna on three important greenfield power projects in Kazakhstan. “TAQA brings value to these projects with its strong track record and expertise in utility-scale power plants in clean solar PV and wind technologies, as well as our expertise in the highly efficient gas-fired technology in our existing fleet. In addition to this, TAQA has made a promise to its shareholders that it will ambitiously grow its international generation capacity and increase the proportion of renewables in our portfolio. This project demonstrates our rapid progress on our growth strategy as we actively pursue domestic and international expansion opportunities to showcase TAQA as the low carbon power and water champion of Abu Dhabi and beyond,” he said.

The agreement follows growing UAE-Kazakhstan bilateral relations between the two countries, with the UAE representing one of Kazakhstan#8217;s key partners in the Middle East. In October 2021, the governments of the two countries signed a joint declaration covering the establishment of a long-term strategic partnership aimed at developing projects in priority industries.

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