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POWER UTILITY | Staff Reporter, Singapore
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ASEAN inks deal with IRENA for rapid renewable energy development

IRENA will support renewables projects with its project facilitation platforms.

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) inked a memorandum of understanding (MOU) formalising a partnership aimed at scaling up renewable energy deployment in the region.

According to an announcement, IRENA will support the ASEAN’s pursuit of 23% primary energy share of renewables by 2025. IRENA said achieving the target will require an estimated annual investment of $27b for the next eight years – a tenfold increase on 2016 investment volumes.

The MOU covers energy planning, assessments and updates to the ASEAN Renewable Energy Outlook, and promoting knowledge sharing amongst regional policymakers for scaled-up renewables deployment.

IRENA will also support the advancement of various renewable energy resources across ASEAN member states through detailed assessments, enable project development through its project facilitation platforms, and training and workshops for stakeholders.

IRENA director-general Adnan Z. Amin commented, “This partnership brings political will and technical knowledge together to unlock the vast potential that exists in Southeast Asia to harness renewable energy and deliver widespread benefits to communities in all ten member states.”

According to the group, employment in Southeast Asia’s renewable energy sector currently stands at around 600,000. “A scale-up of renewables in the region has the potential to create well over two million jobs by 2030,” it said.

A report by IRENA also said that around half of the region’s renewable energy potential lies in power generation, especially in solar PV that could grow 2-60GW. Vast biomass endowment can also accelerate progress in end-use sectors, such as transport, buildings and industry and bring savings of up to $40b by 2025 from reduced fossil fuels expenditure.

The MOU was signed on the 36th ASEAN Ministers on Energy (AMEM) and the Singapore International Energy Week (SIEW), in the presence of regional ministers.

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