Algeria and Germany sign agreement to start gigantic Desertec project

Algeria and Germany have signed a preliminary agreement for several days to start the gigantic Desertec project. This was communicated this Sunday, April 12 by the Algerian Minister of Energy, Mohamed Arkab, on the airwaves of radio-Algerian. This major project aims to transform the Algerian desert, a huge resource of solar energy.

Invited to public radio, Mohamed Arkab said that the Desertec solar energy project has seen great progress. In this regard, he said that the two parties, Algerian and German, signed the initial agreement earlier this month. However, according to the Minister of Energy, the health crisis due to the coronaviruses contributed to slowing down the big project by preventing the arrival of German experts in Algeria.

In addition, the same official added that the general manager of the Sonelgaz group remains in contact with the German partner in order to reach the technical agreement but also to determine the natural capacities available to Algeria in terms of solar energy.

Algeria plans other projects
In addition, Mr. Arkab said that the Desertec solar energy project was not the only project that Algeria intended to launch. Indeed, he explains that the Algerian government has received instructions including a central point, namely “the energy transition”. This is a whole program which is being prepared in coordination with several ministries.

To this end, the Minister stressed that the Algerian energy orientation provides for a special program in three stages. The first in the short term, by activating everything related to energy saving and the use of alternative energies. The second, in the medium term, linked to industrial transformations through the refining of petroleum. And concerning the third step, in the long term, it is economic diversification.

As a reminder, the Desertec mega-project was launched to exploit the energy potential of the deserts of North Africa and the Middle East (MENA) in order to export green electricity to Europe. In 2011, Sonelgaz and the DII Desert Energy group (Desertec) had already signed a cooperation agreement. A feasibility study was even carried out on this reference project. But a few years later, the Algerian authorities gave up participating in the Desertec project. Unlike its neighbors, Morocco and Tunisia, which have started to build solar power plants.

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