- Reliance Industries and Brookfield Asset Management enter MoU to explore local clean energy equipment manufacturing in Australia
- Their focus will be on solar PV modules, long duration battery storage and for equipment related to wind energy
- They plan to evaluate the development of advanced manufacturing in Australia to either make/or assemble final products in the country
India’s richest man Mukesh Ambani is now looking at Australia to explore the possibility of starting renewable energy manufacturing within the country, including for solar PV modules. His Reliance Industries will do so in partnership with Brookfield Asset Management to ‘ensure consistent and adequate supply of the clean energy equipment required to develop up to 14 GW of new, large-scale generation and storage capacity in Australia.’.
Apart from PV modules, this partnership also plans to venture into local manufacturing of clean energy equipment for long duration battery storage as well as for wind energy.
Under the memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed, the duo will evaluate the establishment of advanced operations in the country to make/or assemble equipment used in the construction of renewable energy projects and supplying the same to the market, including to Australia’s largest integrated power generation and energy retailer, Origin Energy Markets.
A Brookfield led consortium announced interest in acquiring Origin Energy Markets in March 2023.
According to Brookfield Renewable Head of Australia, Luke Edwards, this partnership aims to help secure the supply of critical equipment for Australia to drive down its emissions faster.
Reliance brings to the table its ‘strong expertise in solar panel technology and long duration battery storage technology’, as per a joint statement from the duo. The Ambani led private business conglomerate has announced 4 Gigafactories, one each for solar PV, energy storage, green hydrogen fuel cell systems and power electronics back in India (see Reliance Announces Power Electronics Giga Fab).
Like pretty much the rest of the world, Australia too depends majorly on Chinese supply for its solar PV industry. The government is now taking steps to incentivize local production for this equipment with its AUD 15 billion National Reconstruction Fund and supporting efforts towards establishing the entire solar supply chain within the region, but till then it is reliance on foreign produce for the country to meet its target of 82% renewable energy supply in the power mix by 2030 (see Australia To Diversify Clean Energy Supply Chain).
If realized, Brookfield’s independent analysis estimates creation of close to 18,000 direct and indirect jobs with onshore sovereign manufacturing capability for energy transition, especially in New South Wales’ Hunter Valley and Victoria’s La Trobe Valley.
“We are establishing these types of global partnerships in manufacturing now to allow us to get started as quickly as possible given the ever-reducing timeline for Australia to reach its first emissions-reductions targets in 2030,” added Edwards.