The Formosa 1 offshore wind project, developed by Swancor Renewable Energy, is already completed and fully commissioned, acting essentially as a demonstration project to prove the viability of Taiwanese offshore wind power. The announcement on Tuesday that Siemens Gamesa has been awarded the 120 MW expansion contract is good news for the burgeoning Taiwanese offshore wind industry, and proof of local developers’ trust in Siemens Gamesa.
Siemens Gamesa will supply 20 of its SWT-6.0-154 wind turbines beginning in 2019, and will also provide a 15-year service agreement.
“We are proud to be involved with the Formosa 1 development team in this pioneering project, which we started a few years ago with Phase 1, and are now able to continue with an even more advanced technology,” said Andreas Nauen, Offshore CEO for Siemens Gamesa. “This contract is an important milestone for the development of offshore wind in the region. Also, it is an important step for Siemens Gamesa in our ambition to support Taiwan in implementing a reliable and efficient energy system to meet the government’s targets for decarbonization.”
Located approximately 6 kilometers off the west coast of the Taiwanese Miaoli district in the Taiwan Strait, the 128 MW Formosa 1 offshore wind project will be the first project successfully completed as part of the official Taiwanese Grant Scheme which was started in 2012 and has supported the development of 520 MW worth of offshore wind projects which will all be in operation by 2020.
Taiwan’s offshore wind energy market is shaping up to be a lucrative one — with the Taiwanese Government hoping to see 5.5 gigawatts worth of distributed energy installed between 2020 and 2025 — and has recently seen Siemens Gamesa make several moves to begin solidifying its construction base in the region, signing Memorandums of Understanding in December and February. Siemens Gamesa’s competitors, MHI Vestas and Ørsted are similarly eyeing the region. Ørsted is already a stakeholder in the Formosa 1 project — acquiring a 35% ownership stake in the project in January of 2017 — but it is also working on 2 gigawatts worth of offshore wind projects as part of the Taiwanese Greater Changhua scheme. Meanwhile, just last week MHI Vestas signed four Memorandums of Understanding with local companies to build out its own supply chain in the area.