Taiwan & SINU sign $8m solar project

(From Left) Speedtech rep. ROC Embassy rep. (Centre) & SINU rep. during the signing ceremony. Photo from SINU Media

THE much awaited solar project promised by the President of the Republic of China (Taiwan), Madam Tsai Ing-Wen was made official on Friday, July 13 between SINU and Speedtech Energy Ltd.

During Taiwan’s Presidential visit to Honiara last year, Madame Tsai promised a USD1-million solar project gift for the people of Solomon Islands through its National University.

Since then, a project team consisting of representatives from ROC Embassy, the Prime Minister’s Office, Ministry of Mines Energy and Rural Electrification, Solomon Power and SINU worked tirelessly to bring the project to this stage.

Acting Vice-Chancellor of SINU Professor (Dr) Prem Rai says the signing marks a key milestone in getting the project into realisation.

“SINU is looking forward to the completion of the project and the benefits that we will have when Solar Power System is fully installed and completed.”

Rai said SINU Project team had made some cost benefit analysis of the project and the University is expected to save around $0.5 million in electricity bill in a year in the first few years when the Power System is up and running.

“This amount of $0.5 million as saving will increase and double when SINU maximise the usage of the 400 kW produced by the Solar Power System and that is our future focus.

“The dollar saved can be used in other areas to improve the service delivery of the university.”

He thanked the President and the Government of the Republic of China for choosing SINU to be the recipient of the USD$1-million project.

He furthers that it is the right choice because it will benefit the many young Solomon Islanders who are the human resources of the country.

General Manager of Speedtech Energy Ltd Mr Lucas Chu thanked SINU tender board team for choosing his company to setup the solar project here. We have many projects in Japan, Germany, African countries and of course in Taiwan; this will be our first project in the Solomons.

Chu strongly expressed that he will not lose his country’s face.

“We will install the best products for SINU.

“My company already made a decision to setup a solar panel factory here; we will bring the assemble manufacturing so that Solomon Islanders will buy Solar panels made in the Solomons,” concluded the Speedtech GM.

Deputy Counsellor of the ROC Embassy Mr Oliver Weng is pleased that the project was made official between SINU and Speedtech Energy.

He said Taiwan is a good friend of Solomon Islands and over the past year helped in a lot of projects.

“Mid last year, the then Prime Minister Hon Manaseh Sogavare stated to my President that SINU is operated fully on Government’s grants.

“He stated that SINU spent a lot in utility fees and seeking if Taiwan could assist the University.

“My Government sees the importance of the National University, and that is why we are going to install a solar power farm for the University.”

Once the solar project is fully operational, SINU will produce 400kW of electricity on its own for its uses.

Currently, SINU is using about 200KW from Solomon Power to meet its electricity demands.


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