Experts gather to solve fundamental issues in solar energy deployment at inaugural Solar Middle East Conference
- United Arab Emirates: Wednesday, February 06 - 2013 at 12:03
- PRESS RELEASE
Solar technology experts have called on Middle East governments to pave the way for solar investments to take off, as a new conference addressing the fundamental issues facing the region's unlimited solar potential launches in Dubai.
"Everyone is desperate to invest in the Middle East solar industry, they are all just waiting for clear instructions from the governments in the region," said Jigar Shah, Partner of clean energy investment company, Inerjys, and Chairman of the inaugural Solar Middle East Conference.
"The economics of switching to solar energy are far better here than in South Africa, India, Brazil, China and the United States. Now that the costs of developing solar technologies have significantly declined, it is time for the Middle East to turn talk into action," Shah added.
Middle East governments have already signified their intent to boost solar power within their regional energy mix, with at least ten major solar projects worth a combined $6.8bn currently under way in the UAE, Kuwait, Oman, Egypt, Jordan and Morocco.
However, the region still lags behind more established markets such as Europe and North America. Khalid Masri, Managing Director of consultancy firm Standards Associates, and another speaker at the Solar Middle East Conference said the lack of clear policy and incentives in the Middle East remains the main challenge in utilising solar energy to its full potential.
"These can be overcome by introducing state of the art regulations and standards that allow the solar industry to grow and that give the private sector incentives and guarantees to start investing," said Masri.
"I expect a great future for solar energy in the Middle East. The region can be the global leader in solar energy on the practical innovation and deployment side of the equation. To that end, the Solar Middle East Conference can begin the necessary conversations to achieve this goal," he added.
The free to attend Solar Middle East Conference is a feature of the inaugural edition of the Solar Middle East exhibition, which takes place from 17-19 February, and has attracted more than 150 suppliers of solar products from around the world eager to tap into the lucrative MENA market.
Solar Middle East is co-located with the 38th edition of Middle East Electricity, the region's largest and longest-running energy event, hosting more than 1,000 exhibitors showcasing their latest wares in the power, lighting, nuclear, and renewable energy sectors.
Anita Mathews, Director of Informa Energy Group, organisers of Middle East Electricity and Solar Middle East, said, "As power demand in the Middle East continues to grow unabated, countries are looking to invest in alternative, sustainable energy sources for electricity generation."
"The potential for solar power in this region is huge, and the Solar Middle East exhibition and conference will be at the forefront of laying the platform that will develop the region into a world leader in solar power generation and deployment," added Mathews.
Other speakers at the first Solar Middle East Conference include Martin Mock, Managing Director of Belectric Middle East; Cristiano Spillati, Middle East Regional Manager, SkyPower; Dr. Michael Kramer, Senior Associate of Taylor Wessing; and Dr. Tamis Ali Khalid Al Hammadi, Director of Laboratories at Saudi Standards, Metrology & Quality Organisation (SASO).
Solar Middle East is officially supported by solar industry partner associations, the Saudi Arabia Solar Industries Association (SASIA), and the Emirates Solar Industry Association (ESIA), Society of Engineers UAE, Standards Associates, and the Clean Energy Business Council.
The three-day event is set to be the largest ever gathering of solar technology suppliers ever seen in the region, and is partnered with Power + Water Middle East, Africa Electricity, and Power Nigeria.
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