FiTs uncertainty hinders foreign investment

FiTs uncertainty could hinder foreign investment in the UK, according to some Spanish companies. One panelist at the first annual Networking Conference on Renewable Energy at Kings College London, suggested […]

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By Vicky Ellis

FiTs uncertainty could hinder foreign investment in the UK, according to some Spanish companies.

One panelist at the first annual Networking Conference on Renewable Energy at Kings College London, suggested that uncertainty over Feed in Tariffs was an obstacle to investing.

Jose Miguel Ferrer from Grupotec UK, the British branch of a Spanish solar firm, said: “Rumours and speculation make it difficult to bring PV to the UK. All we can hope is that the review comes sooner rather than later.”

Spanish firms are already wise to changes in FiTs legislation in their own country, where FiTs funding has been cut retrospectively.

Lluis Baoda from Spanish finance firm Banco Sabadell said that if businesses could be sure this wouldn’t happen in the UK, Spain’s existing renewables industry would be keen to invest. He told ELN: “We have experience, and we believe that if the framework is clear, and you know that nothing will be changed, then we’ll be in the UK for sure.”

Some Spanish firms are already investing in the UK. Conference panelist Alan Mortimer from Scottish Power said that their Spanish parent company Iberdrola is investing “very substantial and increasing” funds of at least £1billion.

Climate Change Minister Greg Barker has made his position on the issue of FiTs very clear in the past. He said: “I don’t want large scale solar installations to be claiming money meant for householders, small businesses and communities which is why Government has launched a rapid review of the solar sector.”

However, DECC has pledged not to cut FiTs funding retrospectively.