The New and Renewable Energy Authority (NREA) issued the qualification requirements for the companies operating in solar cell systems connected to national grid with capacities from 500 kW to 20 MW, based on a net-metering system.
Daily News Egypt obtained a copy of the requirements booklet. According to the first clause, companies will be classified based on their experiences in the field of solar cells connected to the national grid, with capacities from 500 kW to 20 MW, based on a net-metering system, starting from August 2018.
The second clause specified the required documents for qualification. It also pointed out that the companies established under the Egyptian law and have previously obtained qualification certificates in supplying, installing, and maintaining solar cell systems for capacities up to 500 kW, or any newly established companies that has not obtained a qualification certificate yet, to apply for a new certificate from the executive director of the NREA.
Those companies shall attach their organisational structure, including resumes of the companies’ employees, projects manager, designing engineer, technical managers, and installing technicians, to their applications to the NREA.
They shall also submit a list of rigs used in solar power projects and attach them with test certificates of those rigs in accordance with international standards.
In addition, they shall provide their previous professional experience certificates over last three years besides a detailed technical report on the projects after the completion of the operation and installation stages, to verify the projects’ quality.
The third clause of the requirements includes the validity period of the qualification certificates and renewal conditions. Taking into consideration that the Egyptian Electric Utility and Consumer Protection Regulatory Agency’s amendments to solar energy’s regulations were just issued recently, the lack of experience in implementing solar power projects using photovoltaic cells with capacities up to 20 MW, and to allow the chance for local companies to acquire expertise, therefore the qualification certificates will be valid for one project and for specific capacity.
The qualified companies are entitled to apply individually or in alliance to obtain a certificate for the implementation of a solar power project with capacities from 500 kW to 20 MW.
The qualification certificate is valid for one project determined by the qualified company. If any company has the desire to implement one more project, it shall apply for another qualification certificate. Qualification certificates shall be allocated for each project separately for three years, and then the companies shall be classified into categories.
The fourth clause specified cases of cancelling a qualification certificate. They include violation of one or more of the previous conditions of qualification, including “violation of any agreements or obligations,” disregarding electrical safety factors, or use of non-complying equipment.
When the qualified company or alliance breaches its obligations through which it received the qualification certificate for the implementation of a specific project or any customer complained about the quality or efficiency of solar power system installed by the company, the NREA shall be entitled to address that company to adjust its situation within 15 working days.
When the non-compliant company or alliance fails to adjust its situation within 30 days from the date of request for clarifications, the company or alliance shall be banned for 12 months.
The NREA shall also inform electricity distribution companies of cancelling a qualification certificate of the banned company or alliance. The decision shall also will be published on the authority’s website.
The fifth clause determined the quality requirements for supply, installation, delivery, and operation services, whereby the company undertakes to ensure the quality of the services provided, in addition to presenting a technical and financial offers to the customer after a field visit to the site, including a detailed assay of the solar cell systems, components of the system, its cost, payment methods, and the warranty period.
After the customer approves the offers, a contract shall be signed between the two parties to supply, install, operate, and connect the solar cells system to the national grid, specifying the obligations of each party.
The company shall carry out the required installation works after obtaining the approval from the entitled electricity distribution company, in accordance with the industrial and professional standards and regulations.
Each solar power system shall be operated, tested and delivered in the presence of both the customer and a representative of the entitled distribution company, provided that the company offers a practical training programme for the customer.
The company shall provide the customer with all designs and catalogues of the installed equipment, in addition to the catalogues of periodic and preventive maintenance and all publications and documents.
The company shall also add security instructions on equipment and supplies, and provide the customer an invoice of the total cost of the equipment and services provided with a certificate of warranty.
The sixth clause elaborated the details of the “comprehensive system warranty” with a minimum period of 24 months starting from the date of delivery. During this period, the company must repair or replace any broken-down equipment at its expense and carry out all necessary periodic maintenance.
The company shall also offer “a warranty on components” to ensure that all components that have been installed will not face any malfunction, due to design or operation. It must set the minimum warranty periods for the components.
The seventh clause specified the after-warranty services, where the customer can sign a maintenance contract, which obliges the company to respond quickly to the client’s request for maintenance and to conduct all necessary repairs.
The eighth clause of the requirements determines the responsibilities of the NREA, as it shall coordinate with the distribution companies to carry out periodic review of the projects implemented by each company to evaluating them in accordance with the requirements of qualification.