Smart Grid Modernization
Countries in the Middle East have seen an increasing investment in power generation capacity and smart grid deployment to improve the effective utilization and optimization of generation, transmission and distribution operations.
Sharp rise in renewable energy sources and lower cost of battery storage has opened up an unlimited potential of energy system through the integration of smart grids. However, in many cases distribution grids have not been upgraded, which is crucial to support this surge.
The Middle East’s utilities sector is pushing ahead with smart grid programmes in order to improve the efficiency, reliability and economic sustainability of the electricity networks.
A real-time monitored grid can eliminate power theft and over-consumption, reduce congestion and thus the risk of grid failure. It could make customer service processes significantly simplified and more efficient, which can lead to further cost reductions for operators.
Mena region investment in smart grid infrastructure is on track to reach $17.6 billion by 2027, led by Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and the UAE. Saudi Arabia is said to be the largest smart grid market among Mena countries valued over $3.6 billion.
Smart grids contribute to maintaining electric network balance in case of need, at the same time it fulfills energy transition and carbon emission reduction goals. With that comes the necessity of a digitalized system to handle future upgrades of power grids. The integration of IoT devices into the smart grids will soon be the next step in the ongoing evolution of electricity networks.
In addition to adequate funding and a clear strategic planning, the future prospects for this burgeoning industry will also depend on a stable political and economic situation.