Havana, Sep 20 (EFE) - Cuba will build a photovoltaic park in eastern Cuba with a generating capacity of 5 megawatts (MW) thanks to a donation of more than 114 million dollars from the Chinese government, Cuban official media reported on Wednesday.
According to the Cuban News Agency (ACN), the project is in its "initial phase". Currently, "the conditions of the land" and "the necessary assurances in the execution of the construction works and assembly" are being evaluated.
The park, added local radio station Radio Mayarí, will be located in the municipality of the same name, in the province of Holguín (east), a region frequently affected by the power cuts that Cuba has been suffering for more than two years due to generation problems.
The regional project to change the energy matrix and bet on renewables includes the gradual installation of photovoltaic parks in other adjacent municipalities.
The Cuban government aims to reduce its dependence on fossil fuels, which currently account for 95% of national energy production, and especially on crude oil imports, due to the effort in terms of currency involved.
The 5 MW that this new photovoltaic park would provide do not even represent 1% of the demand at the time of highest daily consumption in Cuba, according to data from the state-owned Unión Eléctrica (UNE).
The national energy transition plan aims for 37% of its energy mix to come from renewable sources by 2030, although it currently accounts for barely 5% and investments in this area are minimal.
For two years Cuba has been facing a multidimensional crisis that is also reflected in the energy sector. Blackouts due to lack of generation capacity are a daily occurrence.
The Cuban National Electric System (SEN) is in a precarious situation, with obsolete generation and distribution systems and a chronic deficit of maintenance and investments. Added to this are the country's financial problems in acquiring fuel.
On Tuesday, a quarter of the country was without electricity during the afternoon-evening peak demand hours.
Frequent power cuts have been a cause of social unrest in the country and one of the triggers of the protests of the last two years, including those of July 11, 2021, the largest in decades. EFE