China-based solar sector supplier GCL Technology Holdings is in advanced talks with Saudi Arabia about opening its first overseas factory as the nations aim to extend their energy ties beyond oil, reports Bloomberg. The world’s second-largest manufacturer of polysilicon, a key ingredient in solar panels, is looking to build a plant in the Middle Eastern nation which would produce 120,000 tons a year, Joint Chief Executive Officer Lan Tianshi said in an interview. GCL Tech could start operations as early as 2025, he said.
“Saudi Arabia has mature infrastructure and experience in industrial manufacturing,” Lan said in a separate interview with Bloomberg Television, adding that the country’s abundant sunlight could support its transition from oil giant to solar energy producer.
GCL Tech could consider also establishing outposts in other countries, though is most advanced in Saudi Arabia, Lan said Thursday in Hong Kong. The company has already filed for registration in the nation, has a team on the ground and is in talks with the local government and royal commissions.