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Solar project put on hold to focus on Maya Train construction

Mexico City, Mexico — In a conference Tuesday night, Fonatur head Rogelio Jiménez Pons said that plans to build 200MW capacity solar generator in the southern region of the country has been suspended. The plan to build the generator was to help the Maya Train project reduce emissions.

“We have to cover in some way the 200MW that needs to be generated, but right now, we have a critical timeline for the Maya Train. We have to recover. Last year, as you know, was a very difficult year. This year it is not so despite the fact that there was already a hurricane,” said Jiménez Pons.

Consequently, the state will focus on the main train project including the construction of railways and train stations.

“This year we want to take advantage of the time, focus on the Maya Train project, and in terms of solar parks, we are going at a different pace,” he added.

Earlier this year, Fonatur requested 238 million peso in financing from the ministry to study the development of a series of clean energy projects for the train on land it owns or could obtain.

After drafting an investment strategy for the projects, the tourism board had said it would draw up the bidding documents that would allow it to go ahead with the construction of 10 renewable projects in partnership with state company CFE and potential lenders.

Fonatur originally hoped to have these documents ready by 2023.

The initiative arises at a time when private investment in renewable projects has been adversely affected by a long regulatory process and permit changes aimed strengthening the CFE and marginalizing private energy producers, which are the main sponsors of wind projects in the country.