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MENAFN - Arab News - 17/09/2012

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(MENAFN - Arab News) Global solar-tech leaders have gathered in Riyadh for the second Annual Solar Arabia Summit.

Saudi Arabia's National Energy Plan and the Kingdom's move to invest 109 billion in the solar energy sector were focus of the event.

Saudi Arabia's growing interest in the solar industry is seen by many as a boost to the international market, according to organizers.

The country's solar power plants dreams are in focus at naseba's second Annual Solar Arabia Summit in Riyadh, which is providing a perfect backdrop for key policy-makers, government officials, investors and business conglomerates to capitalize on the Kingdom's investment of 109 billion in the sector.

In addition to the 40 global leaders in the solar industry, more than 200 solar energy executives were in attendance at the summit.

The second Annual Solar Arabia Summit comprises an exhibition, networking sessions and panel discussions.

The first discussion of the day was delivered by Abdullah Mohammed Al-Shehri, Governor, Electricity and Co-Generation Regulatory Authority, Saudi Arabia; Steven Geiger, chairman, Skolkovo foundation and Gerhard Stryi-Hipp, head of energy policy and coordinator Smart Energy Cities, Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy.

During the discussion, the Governor said ECRA will "give full support to the solar energy industry.

In order for the industry to be successful, he said the "consumer experience must also be innovative."

Stryi-Hipp added: "Up until now, Europe (and particularly Germany) was leading the PV market. However, USA, Japan, India and especially China are growing markets while Europe is stagnating. Due to recent announcements from the Middle East, especially Saudi Arabia, we expect this region will also become an important player in the solar sector very soon."

Osama Al-Bar, Mayor of Makkah, was scheduled to speak on the 100 MW Makkah Municipality project and the scope for growth of solar energy in the region.

Nicholas Watson, managing director, naseba, said: "The Kingdom is obviously taking the wise approach to diversifying its energy sources to sustain economic growth. This summit is an excellent and well-timed platform for international solar developers and manufacturers who want to engage with key stakeholders in the country."


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