Today the largest international players in the field of renewable energy consider Ukraine as the most attractive European market among the developing economies.
Such conclusions were made based on the results of the 9th International Sustainable Energy Forum and Exhibition of Eastern Europe SEF-2017 Kyiv, which took place on October 9-11 in Kyiv.
In particular, in the first half of 2017, the total capacity of renewable energy facilities increased in Ukraine by 183 MW and exceeded 1.46 GW. It is estimated that by the end of the year, this figure may exceed 1.52 GW.
As the founder of SEF Vitaliy Daviy pointed out at the opening ceremony of the event, Ukrainian legislation in the sector of renewable energy and energy efficiency is one of the most advanced in Europe and has allowed to create clear rules of the game in the field of renewable energy, which in its turn has become a powerful impulse for investments in Ukraine.
“This year, SEF-2017 Kyiv gathered more than 400 delegates and 58 exhibitors from 32 countries, with about 80% of the participants being foreign companies that have already invested or are planning to invest in renewable energy projects in Ukraine. Renewable energy has indeed become a market of great opportunities for both large international players and small businesses in Ukraine. The main thing is not to scare off investors with inappropriate legislative initiatives,” - said Vitaliy Daviy.
According to Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Regional Development, Construction and Housing and Communal Services of Ukraine Hennadiy Zubko, the reforming of housing and communal services and the Ukrainian economy in general is impossible without the use of the latest technologies, in particular in the energy sector.
“Ukraine is today one of the European leaders in the pace of renewable energy development and a large number of companies that have joined the Forum in Kyiv is a vivid example of effective state policy. Increasing energy efficiency at all levels of the Ukrainian economy is an important component of reforms. Introduction of the latest technologies of solar, wind energy, biomass energy contributes not only to strengthening Ukraine's energy independence, but also to forming fundamentally new opportunities for business” – the high-ranking official said.
According to Member of Parliament of Ukraine, Chairman of the Subcommittee on Energy Saving and Energy Efficiency of the Committee on Fuel and Energy Complex, Nuclear Policy and Nuclear Safety Alexei Ryabchyn, the energy sector is going to face serious changes, and this regards not only Ukraine.
“The development of “green” technologies changes dramatically the model not only of the economy, but of society as a whole. This process is not simple, because it is about changing the system, which already exists for decades” – stressed the Member of Parliament.
“The development of the legislative framework for investment protection is one of the priorities of the parliament. Based on the renewable energy sector, we can evaluate the effectiveness of such work” – added Viktor Halasiuk, Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on Industrial Policy and Entrepreneurship.
In the opinion of Deputy Minister for European Integration of the Ministry of Energy and Coal Industry of Ukraine Nataliya Boyko, the Energy Strategy of Ukraine until 2035, which was presented by her agency in September, could become a powerful impulse for the development of the energy sector and modernization of the infrastructure. According to this document, the renewable energy industry should play a significant role in the development of the energy sector.
The basis for the formation and rapid development of renewable energy in Ukraine is the feed-in tariff, which was adopted in 2010. The purchaser of all “green” electricity in Ukraine is SC Energorynok. It is the guarantee of this enterprise to ensure a stable payment of the feed-in tariff to renewable energy facilities for produced electricity, which is the basis for the growth of investments in the industry.
“We have developed a clear and understandable system of contractual relations with generating companies. Recently, we have made changes to the payment procedure for produced electricity in accordance with the Law “On Alternative Energy Sources”, but all that is needed for companies is to conclude a new contract” - said Iurii Gnatiuk, director of SC Energorynok, during his speech at SEF-2017.
Ukraine and Eastern Europe, in general, are today a projection of global structural and technological changes that accompany the evolution of the energy sector of the most developed economies in the world.
“Today, China is the world leader in the field of solar energy, where, by the end of 2017, the total capacity of power stations will exceed 125 GW” – said Dimitris Titopoulos, Executive Director for Middle East, North Africa and CIS countries at Suntech Power (Title Partner of SEF-2017 KYIV) during his speech at SEF-2017 KYIV.
“China, the USA, India and Japan account for 75% of all new world power plants installed in 2017” – Suntech Power’s top manager underlined.
“The global renewable energy share is expected to grow up to 26% by 2020, India, China and Brazil will make the main contribution to this dynamic” – said Tetyana Panchenko, International Business Development & Sales Executive at RECOM (Official Partner of SEF-2017 KYIV).
“Tariffs for electricity produced from traditional sources are constantly increasing. At the same time, the cost of electricity generated from renewable sources, in particular by solar power plants, is rapidly decreasing. In Ukraine, the parity point has been almost reached; the industry is going to face radical changes in the near future, “– the director of KNESS Sergiy Shakalov defined the near-term perspective of the global and Ukrainian energy system.
As an example of the global trend of decline in the cost of electricity from renewable sources, director of ZORLU ENERGY GROUP, Evren Evcit, mentioned the latest tender for the purchase of electricity from solar power plants in Germany.
“According to the results of the tender held in Germany in February 2017, the electricity of solar power plants is purchased at a price of 6.6 euro cents per 1 kWh. Thus, over the past two years, the price of such electricity has fallen by more than 28%,” – said Evren Evcit.
According to Yevhen Ladnych, CEO at Rentechno, today the development of the renewable energy industry is manifested not only in the growth of the number of generation facilities and technological achievements, but also in the formation of an ideological coordinate system.
“Today we see how the lobby of “green” energy has already been formed in parliament, and more politicians are talking about renewable energy as a driver of economic development,” – he said.
However, the implementation of renewable energy projects has not only risks related to political and legislative components. Often, developers confront a whole set of organizational tasks during the realization of projects, the ineffective solution of which leads to a loss of time and money.
“The process of project implementation is accompanied by the necessity to solve a whole range of legal and technical issues, and the extent to which the investment will be successful depends on the effectiveness of their solution by the contractor. The availability of land and technical conditions does not guarantee the success of the project yet,” – said Olena Skripnik, CEO at Helios Strategia.
According to industry experts, renewable energy technologies can be effectively integrated into other spheres of activity, in particular, the municipal sector and the agrarian sector, in addition to the direct production of electricity at the feed-in tariff and its sale to the network.
“Cheap simplified non-inverting solar power plants are a great solution for creating autonomous irrigation systems, heating water for households or industrial enterprises,” – pointed out Olexiy Badika, CEO at Atmosfera, during his presentation.
According to Yevgen Prydatko, CIS Business Development Manager at Jinko Solar, one of the main factors of solar energy cost reduction in the world is the continuous improvement of solar modules. As an evidence of this fact, he presented the research done by Jinko Solar.
“In 2017, the efficiency of solar cells has reached 19.2%, in 2021 it will be 21%,” – the specialist described of the company’s objectives.
“Improving the design of modules, the use of new materials and components opens up new opportunities for developers and investors in solar energy. For example, the use of bilateral solar modules can significantly increase the profitability of projects, by 20-30%” – explained Morgane Fleurance, Technical Sales Engineer at JA SOLAR, during his speech.
Producers of inverter equipment have also made a significant contribution to improving the solutions for renewable energy. As the Sales Director for CEE & Nordic European Solar Inverter Business Development Department of HUAWEI, Sean Zhu, emphasized, his company chose the way to maximize the intellectualization of equipment while enhancing its reliability.
“It is important not only to diagnose and identify the problem through monitoring. It is important to provide an automated solution to the problem. This is what our customers are looking for,” – said Sean Zhu.
The 9th International Sustainable Energy Forum and Exhibition of Eastern Europe SEF-2017 Kyiv was held on October 9-11 in Kyiv at “Parkovy” Congress and Exhibition center. 440 delegates and 58 exhibitors from 32 countries became participants of the industry event. The organizer of SEF-2017 KYIV is Innovative Business Centre (IB Center).
The nearest industry event from IB Center is CISOLAR-2018, which will be held in April 2018.