EDF’s renewable energy subsidiary has acquired an 80% stake in Chinese wind developer UPC Asia Wind Management (UPC AWM), becoming the first European company to penetrate the rapidly growing Chinese wind energy market.
EDF Energies Nouvelles bought its stake in the Hong Kong-based company for an undisclosed amount.
In a statement, EDF said it was able to strike this deal thanks to its "strong roots in the country where it has had a presence for over 30 years through activities in nuclear, thermal and hydro generation as well as energy services".
According to EDF, UPC AWM’s portfolio in China totals 1.3GW of capacity either in operation, under construction or in development.
Our goal is to accelerate our low-carbon generation, with a diversified energy mix where nuclear and renewable energy balance each other.– Jean-Bernard Lévy, EDF
China has built up a dominant position in the wind energy market. It constructed one in every two turbines last year, and presently has one-third of the global installed capacity.
The government of China has set the target of an installed capacity for wind energy of 200GW by 2020, roughly twice the size of America’s nuclear industry. This would mean increasing the country’s capacity by 15GW a year.
With this partnership agreement, EDF now operates more than 10GW of installed wind capacity around the world.
Jean-Bernard Lévy, the chairman and chief executive of EDF, said in a statement: "Our goal is to accelerate our low-carbon generation, with a diversified energy mix where nuclear and renewable energy balance each other. Our development in high-potential markets, such as China is a full part of this dynamic process."
Image: A wind farm in Xinjiang (Wikimedia Commons)