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Oman eyes power trading deals through GCCIA

OPWP is seeking to participate in pilot electricity trading activities with another GCCIA member state in order to test and establish the necessary arrangements for firm capacity transactions

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Gccia, Oman, Power trading, Power Transmission and Distribution, News

Oman Power and Water Procurement Co (OPWP) plans to finalise the agreements for power trading through the GCC Interconnection Authority (GCCIA) and execute one trade this year.

OPWP is seeking to participate in pilot electricity trading activities with another GCCIA member state in order to test and establish the necessary arrangements for firm capacity transactions, the company said in its annual report released on Thursday, reported Times of Oman.

“This would create an alternative option for short-term contingent capacity, for which OPWP has previously procured rental diesel generators when required,” OPWP said.

It also plans to establish the contribution of the GCCIA interconnection benefits to requirements for both operating reserves and generation adequacy, in cooperation with Oman Electricity Transmission Co (OETC) and Authority for Electricity Regulations (AER).

Oman joined the GCCIA in December 2014, enabling access to the power systems of other member states via the UAE interconnect. A 220kV interconnection between the Oman (MIS) and UAE (Abu Dhabi) power systems was commissioned in 2011 and has been commercially operational since May 2012, according to OPWP's latest seven-year statement.

GCCIA was established in 2001 for the purpose of interlinking the power systems of GCC countries. GCCIA membership provides access to generation and operating reserves, with tangible benefits to Oman both for planning and operations.

“We are looking to maximise benefits through electricity trading. There have been serious discussions in this regard within GCC. It could be a two-way cooperation with GCCIA. Oman can import electricity during peak demand in summer and we can export when we have excess supply,” OPWP CEO Eng Ahmed al Jahdhami had said last year in an interview to Muscat Daily.

Among OPWP's key priorities for this year is the development of detailed market rules for the electricity spot market.

“OPWP is currently developing the detailed market rules for a wholesale electricity spot market. The market is scheduled to begin operational trials in 2019 and commercial operation in 2020,” the company said in its annual report.

It added that the spot market will operate alongside the existing system of long-term power purchase agreements (PPAs) and power and water purchase agreements (PWPAs). “The spot market rules will be generally modelled on those that have been developed in other countries with certain modifications relevant to Oman.”

OPWP is also planning to develop a new procurement methodology for long-term contracts for electricity supply. The new methodology, OPWP said, will allow plants with expiring contracts to compete with bidders for new capacity for long-term supply agreements.

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