Welcome to Azure International

Azure International is a leading investment and advisory company focused on China's cleantech energy sector. Founded in 2003, we have a team of 20+ local and international professionals based in China with backgrounds in engineering, marketing, manufacturing, consulting, policy, government relations and finance. In addition to deep advisory capabilities in renewable energy, energy efficiency, carbon management, and energy finance, we have proven capability to invest in and accelerate the development of clean energy companies.  Our portfolio and partner companies have achieved both significant commercial success and returns to investors. Azure provides the necessary expertise and execution capabilities in China to lead relationship development with government and strategic partners, project execution, sourcing, sales and technology development – all with deep understanding of Chinese and international requirements.

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News Summary: 

  • Important: NEA announces competitive FIT for wind projects
  • Shandong: 2.4 GW wind power construction in 2018
  • Tianjin: 64.3 billion RMB in smart grid development
  • A new wind power R&D center in Guangdong
  • Siemens Gamesa supplies 640MW offshore project in Taiwan
  • Shanxi province, 400MW wind power to heat project
  • First commercial wind farm in Jiangsu with turbines > 6MW

NEA issues new FIT guidelines for wind projects

On May 18, 2018, NEA issued the “Circular on the 2018 Annual Requirements for Wind Power Construction Management”, listing a number of management guidelines for deployment of wind farms such as how implementing of national targets and avoiding wind curtailment. The most important item is the sudden announcement that, as of the date on which the policy was issued, for all the new onshore wind farms in provinces which have not yet issued their 2018 wind construction plans, and all new offshore wind farms for which an investment entity is not yet identified, the feed-in-tariff (FIT) shall be established via a competitive mechanism. Other projects that already built or do not fit in above categories can continue to enjoy the regular wind FIT. It is also suggested that the wind farms eligible under the distributed wind policy (less than 50MW, 110kV or less grid connection) can still benefit from the original tariffs. (NEA)

There has been regular policy drafting and discussion around reduction of FIT for wind energy, but such a sudden change effective immediately was generally unexpected. Relying on historical events, one can imagine that FITs established via competitive bidding will be significantly lower than original FITs and might also create uncertainty on developer's capacity to retain their project. This can be very bad news for some investors, especially those with projects still in development and not yet announced in provincial plans.  Azure is currently performing further research to understand the details of the policy, such as to which projects it applies, the definition of "investment entity", which "competitive mechanisms" will be put in place to establish future tariffs, and the potential impact on market players.

Shandong province announced 2.4 GW wind power projects in 2018

On May 17th, Shandong Province issued the 2018 annual wind power development plan. The province informed that, in 2017, a total of 3.34 GW of wind power projects have been developed, and announced that a total of 51 power projects have been arranged for 2018, with a total construction scale of 2.4 GW.  (BJX)

Shandong will promote more than 50 new wind energy plants. Considering the relatively average low capacity of wind farms, we expect that several of them are decentralized projects, connecting at or below 110kV. The timing of the announcement is interesting, 1 day prior to the national FIT policy described above.

Tianjin, 64.3 billion RMB in smart grid development

On May 24, the municipality of Tianjin and State Grid signed a 64.3 billion RMB agreement for the development of smart grids. In the next three years, the city will invest both in infrastructure and management tools, in order to guarantee increased energy efficiency. The project aims at promoting clean energy and industrial development.  (BJX)

Tianjin is strongly interested in tackling coal consumption. High investments will be held in that sense, guaranteeing a sustainable development of the area.  We expect that the new IOT network will enable to both internally manage energy use, minimizing on-grid wastes, as well as exploiting excess capacity from neighboring provinces, thus bringing together a large range of stakeholders.

Guangdong, Shanghai Electric establishes a new wind power R&D center

On May 28th, Shanghai Electric Wind Power Group, Shantou University, and Shantou City officially signed an agreement for the construction of a wind power R&D center in Shantou City, Guangdong Province. The center aims at supporting wind energy development in Guangdong: according to the "Offshore Wind Development Plan 2017-2030", the province intends to develop 12 GW of offshore wind power by the end of 2020, and 30 GW by 2030. (CHINAWINDNEWS)

Shanghai Electric, the largest offshore wind power machine manufacturer in China, is expected to introduce innovative technologies, with the support of its western license partner Siemens, while at the same time benefitting of the rapid development of offshore wind power in Guangdong Province.

Siemens Gamesa will provide turbines for a 640MW offshore project in Taiwan
Siemens Gamesa won the bid as turbine supplier for the 640MW offshore wind power project in Yunlin, Taiwan. The offshore wind power project is located about 6 km off the coast and is planned to be completed in 2020. The table below shows the key characteristics of the wind turbine model supplied: (IN-EN)

Name SG 8.0-167 DD
IEC class S (1B)
Nominal Power 8.0 MW
Rotor Diameter 167 m
Blade length 81.5 m
Swept area 21,900 m2
Hub height Site specific
Power regulation Pitch-regulated, variable speed

400MW combined wind and heat project Shanxi province

On May 18th, a 400 MW wind power project with a total investment of 3.5 billion RMB has been officially launched in Shanxi province. The project is planned to feature 193 wind turbines with capacities of 2MW and 2.5MW. Electricity produced by the wind farm will be use in a central heating plant to satisfy local heating demand in winter. (BJX)
Combined wind and heat has been discussed for several year as a solution for avoiding curtailment in North China, but not been widely adopted yet due to the high cost of using wind energy to heat water, compared to combined heat and power plants relying on coal. This project is the first large scale implementation; which will be interesting to follow closely.
First wind farm in Jiangsu with turbines above 6MW

On May 25, the 300 MW Dafeng offshore wind farm in Jiangsu province has passed supervisory preliminary inspections. Three Gorges, the developer, has announced that the first turbine has been successfully installed and construction of 15 monopile foundations as well as laying of the 220kV submarine cables has already been completed. (BJX)
With one or several 6.45MW wind turbines, this is the first wind farm in Jiangsu province to feature turbines larger than 6MW. The associated monopile with a diameter of 8m is maybe the largest produced in China so far.




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