Endesa has signed an agreement with Spanish solar panel maker Isofoton that will support the utility's plans to install 100MW of photovoltaic solar energy in Spain over the next five years.

The aim of the agreement is to ensure that Endesa has access to the equipment required to develop the solar powered facilities it plans to install between now and 2011.

The deal will boost the photovoltaic solar energy market in Spain, and will enhance environmental awareness as it will increase the production of renewable energy, in addition to contributing to meeting Kyoto commitments.

The agreement also provides for collaboration on several projects designed to demonstrate concentrating photovoltaic technology, which will subsequently facilitate the manufacture of more efficient solar modules.

Endesa, Isofoton and the regional Andalusian government also plan to collaborate on developing and constructing a polysilicone plant in Cadiz, which will guarantee the supply of this raw material for photovoltaic module manufacturing. Endesa will supply the power required to operate the plant.

Development on this project, named Silicio Energia, will commence in the coming months and the facility is expected to be operational in 2009. Estimated investment in the project totals E250 million, and the collaborators aim to reach a polysilicone capacity of 2,500 tonnes/year, equivalent to 250MW of photovoltaic modules per year.