The Middle East and Africa (MEA) region is expected to install 17 gigawatts (GW) of new onshore wind capacity in the next five years (2023–2027) after posting a record low installation last year, according to a new report by the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC).

Out of the 17 GW forecast for the 2023-2025 period, 5.3 GW will come from South Africa, followed by Egypt (3.6 GW), Saudi Arabia (2.4GW), and Morocco (2.2 GW), and the rest of the region, GWEC’s annual Global Wind Report 2023 said.

2022 saw a steep decline in new wind power installed, with only 453 megawatts (MW) of onshore wind power connected, the lowest since 2013. In contrast, 1,809 MW of wind power was connected in 2021.

The key markets of Egypt, Kenya, Saudi Arabia, and South Africa showed zero new capacity installed in 2022, according to the data published in the Report. Morocco installed 276 MW of new capacity while the rest of Africa added 73MW.

The Report said new onshore wind additions for the MEA in the next five years have been downgraded by 16 percent (2.6 GW) compared with GWEC Market Intelligence’s Q3 2022 Outlook.

“This is the result of most of the awarded onshore wind projects from the REIPPP Bid Window 5 auction being delayed in South Africa and no wind capacity being awarded from the REIPPP [[Renewable Independent Power Producer Programme] Bid Window 6 auction, launched in 2022, due to the unavailability of grid capacity in the provinces of Eastern Cape and Western Cape,” the report said.

The Report said annual growth is likely to bounce back, reaching 5 GW in 2026–2027, with REIPPP Bid Window 5 auction projects coming online and GW-level projects expected to be built in North Africa and Saudi Arabia.

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(Writing by Anoop Menon; Editing by Bhaskar Raj)