IEC inks strategic partnership deal with Huawei
INNOVATIVE Energy Company (IEC) Limited (formerly IEC SPEI Limited) has inked a partnership deal with Chinese technology company Huawei that will see both companies collaborating on the implementation of several solar energy projects with battery energy storage systems in Jamaica.
The deal forms part of IEC’s strategy to expand its renewable energy projects using the company’s expertise in the field and will provide the vertically integrated energy company with unique access to competitive prices and technical support.
Signed in the People’s Republic of China in May 2023, the strategic partnership agreement was “consummated” just weeks before Christmas, IEC founder and Executive Chairman Nigel Davy informed Jamaica Observer.
“Huawei is among the fastest-growing digital power systems manufacturers and also they are a tier one manufacturer, as deemed by Bloomberg, so partnering with a company like Huawei will, of course, enhance our standing in the business that we’re in. Two, we’ll get preferential prices from them; and three, they’ll also give us access to special pricing and training for our engineers to service their equipment in the region,” he explained.
So far, IEC and Huawei have outlined three major solar installation projects that are underway — two at the island’s international airports and the other with the Ministry of Agriculture through National Irrigation Commission.
“IEC continues its collaborative efforts with technology companies such as Huawei to offer the latest innovations that drive green energy transformation. We are excited to be in a position to help Jamaica achieve its 2037 green energy vision and equally excited to be working with Wigton and our major clients such as MBJ Airports Limited, PAC Kingston Airport Limited, and the National Irrigation Commission,” a release from the company quotes Davy.
Work at National Irrigation Commission will begin in three months, and a budget of $1.4 billion has been set aside for the completion of that project. Another $1.6 billion has been earmarked for the phase two implementation of solar systems at Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston, which is slated for completion in about a year, and $1.2 allocated to Montego Bay’s Sangster International Airport.
In the meantime, both Huawei and IEC are pursuing other opportunities as they seek to build out a portfolio of projects. In fact, both are now collaborating on a bid in response to a request for proposal for 100 megawatts of renewable energy issued by the Generation Procurement Entity, which is responsible for leading and managing the implementation and replacement of baseload generation in keeping with the Integrated Resource Plan of the Government of Jamaica.
“We continue to work with other private sector companies [but] we can’t disclose those yet because they have not officially awarded us the projects, except [to say] that we are in advanced stages of negotiations,” Davy told Business Observer, adding that one is a telecommunications services provider.
With regard to the training component of the partnership agreement, Davy said it augurs well for the enhancement of the skill set of local engineers. To that end, IEC will leverage the partnership by “factory” training its engineers to provide local technical support and wil market Huawei Digital Power’s commercial and industrial products to third parties in Jamaica and the region.
The executive chairman revealed further that it will be using tertiary and vocational training institutions as the platforms to facilitate the knowledge transfer, but “primarily” the facilities at University of Technology, Jamaica.
Huawei’s president of digital power – LATAM and Caribbean, Felix Chen said the technology company is delighted to have IEC as a strategic partner and looks forward to deepening its relationship with the Jamaican entity over the years to come.
According to IEC’s website the company has developed, financed, constructed and operated over 20 energy projects in the United States, Central America and Jamaica, with a total capital cost of over US$800 million. Its main focus is on reducing the energy costs of its industrial, commercial, and residential customers through the execution of renewable energy projects such as solar, liquefied natural gas, and wind power.