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Hyundai, KCC to build Saudi polysilicon plant

28 Feb 2011

Saudi Arabia-based Polysilicon Technology Co (PTC) has awarded a $380m contract to build a polysilicon manufacturing plant to two South Korean companies, Hyundai Engineering and KCC.

The plant is to be built at Al Jubail Industrial City on Saudi Arabia’s east coast and will initially have a capacity of 3,350 tonnes of polysilicon per year.

PTC said it plans to grow this to 12,000 tonnes by 2017, as well as expanding into ingot and wafer production, after spending between $1.2bn and $1.5bn on the project.

‘Over the past few years, the solar industry has gone through major consolidation and optimisation which has led to a huge reduction in costs, bringing it closer to grid parity with conventional sources of power,’ said Ibrahim Al-Humaidan, executive director & CEO of PTC.

Saudi Arabia has long been the world’s largest oil exporter, but the country is seeking to diversify its energy sources as its oil reserves gradually decline.

The country’s king has just announced a $36bn programme of pay rises and debt cancellation in an effort to prevent the unrest which has broken out in other Middle Eastern nations from spreading to Saudi Arabia.

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