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SOLEK to build its largest solar power plant Leyda


SOLEK, the company of Czech renewable energy pioneer Zdeněk Sobotka, is building its largest project to date. The 95,2 MW Leyda photovoltaic plant covers an area of 120 hectares, equivalent to 150 football fields, and it is located in San Antonio, 90 km from the capital Santiago de Chile. The new plant will significantly contribute to the decarbonisation goals of the country representing an advance renewable energy market.

Chile is one of the countries with a very modern, sustainable energy sector using a high level of renewable energy, and the new SOLEK Leyda power plant will contribute significantly to this and help meet the country's decarbonisation goals. The SOLEK Group had an opportunity to welcome a delegation of the Czech Minister of Industry and Trade, Jozef Síkela, at the site of the Leyda. "With the rapid growth of renewables, the demands on the energy grid are increasing. It is one of the challenges in the process of modernisation of the energy sector. Chile is already addressing these challenges and can be an inspiration for us in this respect. It has solved many issues, which also await the Czech Republic in terms of transformation of our energy sector. I am glad that we can share the experience with colleagues from Chile," said Jozef Síkela.

Business delegation of the Czech Minister has come to support activities of the Czech companies as SOLEK who want to actively participate in the decarbonization plans of Chile and other countries in South America. "It is certainly pleasing to see that Czech companies are making a significant contribution to the modernisation of the local energy sector, and it was an honour for me to support their efforts in the negotiations with their Chilean counterparts," added Minister Síkela. His business mission also includes representatives of companies from the IT, energy and heavy industry sectors. The second stop of this business mission will be Uruguay.

The SOLEK`s Leyda photovoltaic power plant will generate 185 GWh of green energy annually, corresponding to the consumption of 23,000 households, and it will save 71,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year. The electricity from Leyda will contribute to Chile's ambitious plans to reach net zero emissions by year 2050.

"Chile takes renewable energy seriously; it has great ambitions in this area, thanks to which we are able to build large projects there. Leyda is our biggest investment to date. I believe that we will continue to build power plants of this scale. It has been ten years since SOLEK entered Chilean market. Having this experience and trust of the financial investors, we continue investing to renewable energy projects not only in Chile but also in other countries, for example in Colombia, Spain, France, Greece, Romania, and other countries including the Czech Republic," says SOLEK founder and CEO Zdeněk Sobotka.

The construction of the Chilean portfolio is financed in partnership with international banks BNP Paribas and Natixis. BlackRock Debt Fund also provided a mezzanine financing.

Once operational, the Leyda plant will supply the power generated through a 15-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with ENEL Generación Chile. This is a long-term energy supply contract between green power producer and customer with predefined conditions.

The project was developed in accordance with the highest standards on the market and with environmental considerations in mind. Four hundred direct and indirect jobs are expected to be created during construction. The plant is expected to be operational in the fourth quarter of 2024.

The SOLEK Group is now focusing on new and promising areas such as the development of floating PV systems, agrovoltaics and battery storage. SOLEK is a leading energy company engaged in the design, construction and operation of solar power plants in Europe and Latin America. It operates nearly 40 photovoltaic power plants in Chile with a total capacity of over 250 MW. By the end of 2023, the entire SOLEK Group had 486 MW of solar power plants connected or under construction.

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