Taiwan Chooses Seven firms to build 10 wind farms

Taiwan Chooses Seven firms to build 10 wind farms

Taipei set to choose winners of $60bn worth of contracts for offshore turbines

Seven offshore wind farm developers have secured government contracts to build 10 offshore wind farms along the western coast of Taiwan as the government aims to build up 5.5 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind power capacity by 2025, the Ministry of Economic Affairs said yesterday.

The 10 projects would have a total capacity of 3.836GW by 2025, the ministry said in a statement after the completion of a two-stage selection process over the past two weeks.

The ministry would hold an auction by the end of next month to select offshore wind farm developers to build the remaining 1.66GW capacity, Deputy Minister of Economic Affairs Kung Ming-hsin (龔明鑫) told a news conference.

“Those who did not win contracts are allowed to participate in the auction,” Kung added.

Seven wind farms off the coast of Changhua County would have the largest capacity — 2.4GW — by 2025, while three in Taoyuan, Miaoli and Yunlin will have a combined capacity of 1.436GW.

Two wind farms — separately operated by Swancor Holding Co Ltd (上緯) and Wpd Taiwan Energy Co Ltd (達德能源), the local subsidiary of Germany-based Wpd Group — would together generate 0.738GW by 2020, the ministry said.

From 2021 to 2025, the Wpd Taiwan unit in Yunlin and eight other wind farms, whose developers comprise four foreign investors and two government-backed companies, would generate 3.098GW of electricity, it said.

The developers of the eight wind farms are Wpd Taiwan, Denmark’s Orsted A/S, Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP), Canada’s Northland Power Inc (NPI), China Steel Corp (CSC, 中鋼) and state-run utility Taiwan Power Co (Taipower, 台電), the ministry said.

Between 2021 and 2025, Wpd Taiwan plans to bring online another wind farm off Taoyuan, while Orsted and CIP would operate two farms in Changhua.

CSC, Taipower and NPI would each operate one wind farm off Changhua during the period, ministry data showed.

There are still some challenges for the developers to overcome before their wind farms can connect to the grid, Bureau of Energy Director-General Lin Chuan-neng (林全能) said, citing deposits and construction permits.

In addition, the companies are required to draft “localization” plans to explain how they will boost ties with Taiwanese suppliers, as the ministry plans to build a local supply chain for wind turbines and undersea foundations, Lin said.

The project to ramp up offshore capacity by 2025 is expected to generate about 20,000 jobs and attract investments valued at NT$962.5 billion (US$32.51 billion), data showed.

The ministry said two local companies, cement producer Asia Cement Corp (亞泥) and textile supplier Lealea Enterprise Co (力麗), did not win wind farm contracts.

In related news, Taipower yesterday signed a NT$25 billion procurement contract with Luxembourg-based marine construction company Jan De Nul Group and Japan’s Hitachi Ltd to build 21 offshore wind turbines in Changhua’s Fangyuan Township (芳苑).

Each turbine would have an installed capacity of 5.2 megawatts, Hitachi said in a statement.

The three companies would start examining the ocean bed off Changhua this month and the construction of the turbines is scheduled to start next year, it said.

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