Convalt Energy CEO seeks investment from Thailand company

Published: Dec. 1, 2022 at 5:45 PM EST
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TOWN OF HOUNSFIELD, New York (WWNY) - Convalt Energy CEO Hari Achuthan hopes to be closer to construction after hosting an international delegation of investors on Thursday.

“This is going to get done. It’s just taking a little longer than expected, but we’re being very positive,” he said.

Achuthan is referring to the more than 300,000-square-foot solar panel manufacturing facility, proposed to be constructed next to Watertown International Airport.

The project, initially scheduled to have shovels in the ground by now, has had some setbacks - one of them being funding.

“EGAT I is looking at working with us where it is a bilateral relationship where they invested as a minority in our projects, our solar projects in the United States,” said Achuthan.

EGAT International, an energy company out of Thailand, is considering investing in the solar panel factory in Watertown. Achuthan, along with representatives from the Jefferson County Industrial Development Agency welcomed the team for a tour of the future project.

“They’re here to visit the location of the factory and the solar projects that we have. We have a couple of projects that we are developing here. One behind the airport, the other one, Sourwine Farm, which is up in Redwood,” said Achuthan.

“We want to put some sort of energy between the two countries. That’s why we want to participate in a new energy project in the U.S.,” said Somkit Praditseree, EGAT International delegate.

The effects of the partnership could be exponential on the economy of the area.

“This first project is going to be a $64 million project, an investment in our community, creating hundreds of jobs. That first project is going to lead to additional projects and we’re talking hundreds of millions of dollars,” said Dave Zembiec, CEO, Jefferson County Economic Development.

Convalt says it’ll start getting the land ready for construction in the next couple of weeks.