Qatar has one of the lowest shares of renewables in the power mix among the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries. The abundant gas reserves have enabled Qatar to enjoy supply security with 99.6% of the capacity and generation coming from thermal power in 2021. The country lacks robust policies that support renewable power and offers no major incentives for the growth of renewables, states GlobalData.
The current rise in global energy prices has benefitted Qatar with several European countries turning to the Arab nation for natural gas supply. Although Qatar faces no imminent shortage of gas supply, the country will be pressurized by the global community to adhere to climate goals. As a result, the country has pledged to decrease its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 25% by 2030 compared to business-as-usual (BAU) levels.
GlobalData’s latest report, “Qatar Power Market Size, Trends, Regulations, Competitive Landscape and Forecast, 2022-2035,” states that Qatar’s cumulative power capacity is expected to achieve a CAGR of more than 4% during 2021-2035.
Attaurrahman Ojindaram Saibasan, Power Analyst at GlobalData, comments, “Qatar has a poor track record of meeting renewable targets and often changes the targets to suit the country’s renewable development pace.”
In 2020, the country failed to meet the 200 MW renewable target as stipulated under Qatar’s Second National Development Strategy 2018-2022 (NDS-2). The solar PV target was also revised from achieving 10 GW by 2030 to 5 GW by 2035. Qatar aims to achieve 20% renewable electricity by 2030. Even achieving the latest revised targets are a matter of concern as there is a limited push towards it.
At the current pace, Qatar is expected to achieve only around 4.6 GW of solar PV capacity by 2035 and renewable generation is set to account for only 5.4% in 2030.
Saibasan ends, “The government should focus more towards building robust renewable policies and strive for strategic technology partnerships to increase the efficiency and resiliency of its solar PV plants. The country should plan for competitive auctions in a timely manner. Investing in storage systems and making the grid ready for large-scale renewable integration will enable Qatar to achieve its renewable targets and meet its climate goals.”