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LatinNews Daily - 12 February 2021

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In brief: Bolivia opens solar power plant

* Bolivia’s President Luis Arce has announced the start of operations at the Ancotanga solar power plant in Oruro department, the largest such plant in the country with a capacity of 100 megawatts, reportedly equivalent to 7% of Bolivia’s electricity demand. At almost 4,000 metres above sea level this is said to be the highest solar power plant in the world, and contains more than 300,000 solar panels over 214 hectares. The plant will be run by state-owned electricity company Empresa Nacional de Electricidad de Bolivia (Ende), and was funded by US$54.7m in investment from Bolivia’s central bank (BCB), France’s development agency (AFD), and the European Union (EU). At its inauguration, Arce discussed the “double challenge” facing the country, of “generating economic development” while also “protecting and respecting the environment”. He highlighted the completion of this project as an important step towards “the production of clean energy” in Bolivia, highlighting the country’s current dependence on thermoelectric plants that use natural gas to generate electricity.