Vattenfall Shortlisted for 1 GW French Offshore Wind Tender
France has shortlisted Swedish utility Vattenfall and its two partners to bid in a tender to develop an offshore wind farm with a capacity of about 1 gigawatt (GW) off Normandy, the company said on Tuesday.
Vattenfall and its partners - German wind farm developer wpd and French institutional investor Banque des Territoires - would participate in France's fourth offshore wind tender alongside five other groups, it said.
"France is an attractive market for Vattenfall's offshore wind energy activity," said Catrin Jung, head of Vattenfall's business unit offshore.
Unlike some competitors, the state-owned utility is focused on developing European offshore wind power and is not seeking to expand to other regions such as the United States or Asia.
The Normandy project will be awarded in 2022, with the wind farm due to be operational by 2028, France's ministry for the ecological transition said in a statement.
"The future of our electricity system depends on the development of offshore wind power: it is a sustainable, safe and competitive energy source that does not emit greenhouse gases," French ecological transition minister Barbara Pompili said.
The other pre-qualified bidders are: Iberdrola; Royal Dutch Shell; France's EDF and Maple Power; RWE and Total; as well as Engie and Portugal's EDP, the statement said.
France is aiming to install 2.4 GW of offshore wind capacity by 2023 and 6.2 GW by 2028. It has already completed three tenders for 3 GW, 1 GW and 0.6 GW respectively.
The country's plans are part of a wider global trend for offshore wind auctions in an increasingly competitive environment.
(Reuters - Reporting by Nora Buli and Forrest Crellin; Editing by David Clarke)