SunPower to open solar panel manufacturing unit in South Africa

solar-ATRSunPower, an affiliate of Total, operates solar panel manufacturing plants in North America, Europe and Asia, and plans to open its factory in South Africa in 2015. (Image source: SunPower)USA-based solar technology and energy services provider SunPower plans to start a solar panel manufacturing unit by 2015 in South Africa’s capital Cape Town

At this new facility, the company will manufacture solar panels and expects to produce up to 160MW annually. The company estimates that it will create up to 150 local jobs and will begin recruitment efforts from 2015, SunPower said in a statement.

This facility will also house SunPower’s engineering, procurement, construction and operations management offices, consolidating its South African business into one building, the company added.

Marty Neese, COO at SunPower, said, “SunPower has a significant presence in the South African solar market, including two large power plants built in 2014 and another one that will begin construction soon. By manufacturing our high efficiency solar panels at this new facility, we will not only help the local economy, but continue to deliver clean, renewable energy to this region."

Earlier in 2014, SunPower had completed the construction of two ground-mounted solar projects totaling 33MW near Douglas in the Northern Cape.

“Our investment in this new plant is part of our commitment to the local South African solar market, and meets our objective to build a sustainable business through local investment and create jobs in the region,” noted Neese.

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