A project to build the longest electric cable in the world, connecting Morocco to Great Britain, is currently being developed by Xlinks which hopes to raise $ 21.9 billion to link the two countries with 3,800 kilometers of cables under the sea and transport 10.5 gigawatts from Moroccan solar photovoltaic plants to the UK. The project could provide low-carbon electricity to 7 million UK homes.
The company which is co-managed by a former chief executive of Tesco hopes to meet the growing British demand which wants to triple its electrical interconnections by 2030. “We are approaching it as remote production, so it’s only for the market energy in the UK,” said CEO and founder of Xlinks, Simon Morrish, who highlighted the resilience of Moroccan solar power generation.
The project could be paired with a 5 gigawatt battery to store electricity to send it to Britain when needed. Based on government contracts, Xlinks would offer 48 pounds per megawatt hour, just over half the cost of the new Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant under construction.
The company plans to build at least two factories to manufacture the cables, which would be faster than waiting for an existing company to do so. These factories should be built in 2023 according to Xlinks, for cabling to begin in 2025 and commissioning in 2029.
The project is currently in negotiation with the Moroccan authorities and it could lead in Morocco to the creation of 10,000 jobs according to Current-News, of which 2,000 would be permanent.