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Economy & Business - March 2021

ECONOMIC HIGHLIGHTS

BOLIVIA | New solar power plant begins operations. In February Bolivia’s President Luis Arce announced the start of operations at the Ancotanga solar power plant in Oruro department, the largest such plant in Bolivia with a capacity of 100 megawatts, reportedly equivalent to 7% of Bolivia’s electricity demand. At almost 4,000m above sea level this is said to be the highest solar power plant in the world and contains more than 300,000 solar panels spread 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, emphasising the country’s current dependence on thermoelectric plants that use natural gas to generate electricity.

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