Scottish energy company SSE plc expects to reach the financial close for the 588MW Beatrice offshore wind farm by the end of May.
Beatrice, planned for the outer Moray Firth, will be project financed with non-recourse debt, SSE said.
Subject to financial close, onshore construction activities will begin in 2016 with offshore construction planned for 2017.
The project is expected to be fully operational by 2019.
Beatrice is a joint venture project between SSE (40%), Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP) (35%), and Repsol (25%).
The wind farm is expected to deliver around GBP 700 million into the UK economy via supply chain opportunities alone, according to SSE.
In addition to Beatrice, SSE has an interest in two further offshore wind farm developments: Seagreen, a 50:50 partnership with Fluor Limited with a capacity of up to 3,500MW, and Forewind, a four-way partnership with RWE Innogy, Statoil and Statkraft with a capacity of up to 4,800MW.
The first phase of Seagreen of up to 1,050MW is consented although this decision is subject to a judicial review in the Court of Session heard in 2015.
Forewind has consent for four separate 1,200MW projects in the Dogger Bank Zone and the four joint venture partner organisations will agree the best route forward for each, SSE said.
In October 2015 SSE announced that it had agreed exit terms from the 340MW Galloper project, a 50:50 partnership with RWE Innogy, following RWE Innogy’s announcement that it had reached financial close on the project.
The UK Government confirmed in the Budget 2016 that it intends to auction GBP 730 million of CfD contracts in this parliament for offshore wind and other less established technologies connecting in 2021-26.
The first auction is expected to be later this year with GBP 290 million available. This announcement provides welcome clarity about the future for offshore wind, according to SSE.