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Oman to award Sur project by end of June

IPP concession will be awarded to one of five shortlisted firms

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The contract for Oman's Sur IPP will be awarded this month. (Getty Images)
The contract for Oman's Sur IPP will be awarded this month. (Getty Images)

The Omani government announced on Thursday that it would award a concession to build an independent power project of 2,000MW capacity in Sur by the end of June.

There are five short-listed companies in the race to build the plant; Japan’s Marubeni and Mitsui, Germany’s Siemens, Singapore’s Sembcorp Utilities and Turkey’s Enka. Qatar Electricity and Water, the third largest publicly trade utility in the Middle East, said that it had joined with Marubeni to bid for the construction of the plant.

“We are there and they are opening the bid this week,” said Fahad Al Mohannadi, general manager of Qatar Electricity, told local media, adding that he expected a decision to be made on the project by the end of the month.

The short-listed companies have been selected from 29 multinationals from across the world, which evidenced an interest in participating in the development of Oman’s largest green field project.

The project is one of the major power projects aimed at meeting growing demand within the country.

According to the development plan, the first phase of the Sur project, 400MW generation capacity, will be ready by 2013. Oman Electricity Transmission Company has already started taking initiatives to reinforce the transmission system around Sur, in anticipation of the work that will soon commence.

The local demand in Sur is lower than what the power plant can generate, so the excess will be exported to the rest of the Sultanate. The first phase of this expansion, for 220kV lines, was awarded to the National Contracting Company in May 2011.

Other power projects which are underway in other parts of the country include Barka 3 and Sohar 2, two plants with an aggregate planned generating capacity of 1,490MW and the Salalah IWPP, which has a capacity of 450MW.

The region of Duqm is also in line for receiving new generating capacity, in order to support the industrial development that is taking place around the new port there. Several options are under consideration for that project.

Electricity demand in Oman is expected to grow by 9% for the foreseeable future, experts say. The bulk of this will come from residential consumption, despite industrial and commercial consumption increasing in recent years.
 

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