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Masdar strikes $14bn UK offshore wind farm deal

Crowd, Person, Accessories Reuters/Thaier Al Sudani
British prime minister Rishi Sunak delivers a national statement at Cop28

UAE renewables company Masdar has agreed to acquire a 49 percent stake in Germany-based RWE’s twin Dogger Bank South offshore wind projects in the UK, representing an £11 billion ($14 billion) investment, the parties said.

The deal was announced at Cop28 in Dubai, as UK prime minister Rishi Sunak pledged £1.6 billion in funding towards UN climate change goals.

Sunak had recently scaled back Britain’s net zero ambitions and was notably absent from a UN climate summit in New York in September.

At Cop28, the UK appears eager to prove it is still committed to tackling climate change. Within its pledge made at this week’s summit, it allocated £40 million to the UN Loss and Damage Fund to help developing countries recover from climate-related damage. The UK is one of only a handful of countries to have set out their financial commitment to the fund.

Dogger Bank South (DBS) is located 130 kilometres off the UK’s Yorkshire coast, in the North Sea. The two projects combined would create one of the world’s biggest offshore wind farms, with a maximum capacity of 3GW and capable of powering up to three million UK homes.

Construction is targeted to start in 2025 following the investment by Masdar, with completion of both projects scheduled for 2031.

Abu Dhabi-based Masdar said the deal builds on the £10 billion UAE-UK Sovereign Investment Partnership, which aims to boost bilateral investments in technology, infrastructure and the energy transition.

Under the DBS deal, Masdar will acquire a 49 percent stake and RWE will retain 51 percent, remaining in charge of development, construction and operation throughout the lifecycle of the projects.

“The UK is the world’s second largest offshore wind market and offers huge growth potential,” said Masdar chief executive Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi.

“Masdar has been active in the UK for more than a decade, developing world-class clean energy projects that demonstrate how innovation and collaboration can lead to a cleaner, greener future.”

RWE chief executive Markus Krebber added: “With Masdar … in combination with RWE’s many years of experience in the development, construction and operation of offshore wind farms, we are in an excellent position to strongly support the decarbonization of the UK.”

Offshore wind energy could generate 380GW globally by 2030, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency.

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