World renewable energy agency says GCC can achieve $200bn returns

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The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) is adding momentum to the recent increase in investment in renewable energy with the roll out of the first allotment of its US$350 million funding cycle in conjunction with the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD).

The two Abu Dhabi-based institutions are working together to incentivize innovative renewable energy projects in developing countries. IRENA is accepting applications from such projects until 12 January 2013 for US$ 50 million in ADFD concessional loans in the first of its seven funding cycles.

“This financing from ADFD, administered with the support of IRENA, will help projects that are innovative and replicable to get off the ground,” says IRENA’s Deputy Director-General, Frank Wouters. “By making such projects bankable, we believe we can create substantial growth opportunities for renewables in energy-poor countries.”

The unprecedented rise in recent investment is injecting a much needed impetus to the clean energy sector, and the Project & Finance Village at the sixth World Future Energy Summit (WFES) in Abu Dhabi will provide an avenue for investors to evaluate new projects. An almost twofold increase is expected in the number of international cleantech and renewable energy projects on display at the village from 15-17 January, 2013.

Global investment in clean energy in the third quarter of 2012 has totaled US$56.6 billion according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance, with many new projects being located in emerging markets.

It has been widely reported that Qatar is currently working on a solar energy project which will account for 16% of the country’s total electrical output by 2018, while Saudi Arabia is seeking investors for a US$109 billion solar energy program which will provide a third of electricity needs by 2032 to add to their planned nuclear, wind and geothermal output.

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