UPDATE 2-France to launch third offshore wind tender

(Adds details of floating wind farm consortium)

PARIS, April 4 France plans to launch a tender
for turbines for a third offshore wind farm, the country’s
energy minister said on Monday, to be built off the northern
harbour of Dunkirk.

Unlike Britain, Germany and Denmark, France has not yet
installed any offshore wind turbines, though it has awarded two
tenders for fixed-foundation offshore wind farms, and launched a
tender for floating wind turbine projects.

Energy Minister Segolene Royal said in a statement the
tender would include a new procedure of “competitive dialogue”
with bidders to fine tune requirements and to give them the
chance to improve their bids during the process.

The statement did not specify the size of the tender, nor
when bidding would close.

Royal said studies of wind, wave and soil conditions would
be done by public authorities before bidders had to make final
bids and that the government would simplify procedures for
building permits.

France awarded its first offshore wind tender for 2,000
megawatts (MW) of capacity in 2012 at four sites, representing
an investment of about 7 billion euros ($8 billion).

A consortium of EDF and Alstom won three of
the sites while Spain’s Iberdrola, in partnership with
French nuclear company Areva, won the fourth.

A second tender for 1,000 MW and an investment of 4 billion
euros was awarded in 2014 to a consortium led by French gas and
power company Engie including Portugal’s EDP
Renovaveis, France’s Neoen Marine and Areva.

Engie, EDP Renovaveis, Caisse des Depots and Eiffage
also said on Monday they had submitted a “pilot
floating wind farm” proposal to the French Environment and
Energy Management Agency.

France launched a tender in August for proposals for
floating wind farms at four sites, with three to six turbines
each with a capacity of at least 5 MW.

The companies said in a statement their proposed
installation would include three to six turbines with a minimum
capacity of 6 MW each.

($1 = 0.8800 euros)

(Reporting by Geert De Clercq; editing by David Clarke)

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Source URL:http://www.reuters.com/article/france-wind-idUSL5N1774WU

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