Acwa and Masdar extend hydrogen cooperation with Baku

Less than a month after its UAE counterpart, Masdar, signed a comparable agreement, Saudi Arabia’s government-affiliated renewables firm Acwa Power has decided to work with the State Oil Corporation of Azerbaijan Republic (Socar) on the creation of green hydrogen.

The agreements demonstrate the growing dominance of Arab Gulf state-affiliated companies in the development of clean energy in Central Asia and the South Caucasus as unexpected oil earnings spur their international investment activities. Nevertheless, they also reflect a broader desire to meet the EU’s demand for hydrogen imports by utilizing Azerbaijan’s underutilized renewable energy potential.

Acwa and Masdar have both decided to expand their clean energy partnership with Baku to include renewable fuel. As part of the Great West Hydrogen Valley program, the French developer will provide 2t/d of hydrogen to off-takers.

A green hydrogen investment platform for emerging countries will be investigated by a state-owned developer of renewable energy in the UAE and the financing arm of the World Bank. The European Commission relaxes the requirements for grid-derived hydrogen and extends the start date for hourly renewable energy matching to 2030.

According to co-developer Air Products, the three JV participants have also chosen to restructure project funding. The 1.2 million t/yr green ammonia complex is still slated to begin operations in 2026, despite the lack of a finalized FID. Green continues to outperform blue as the Kingdom moves from planning to execution. The bloc will grant projects with a predetermined premium per kilogram of renewable hydrogen produced.

In comparison to electrification and renewable energy, hydrogen is projected to have a minor impact on sustainable impact portfolios by 2030, when the government targets 5 million t/yr of production capacity.

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