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  • Saudi Arabia plans two new gas-fired power plants


    12 June 2024


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    Saudi Power Procurement Company (SPPC) has invited companies to bid for the transaction advisory contracts for its next gas-fired independent power projects (IPPs).

    According to an industry source, the Saudi principal buyer has received bids for the financial, legal and technical consultancy roles for the Al-Rais and Riyadh 16 IPPs.

    The Al-Rais IPP will have a capacity of 2,400MW while the Riyadh 16 IPP has a planned capacity of 3,600MW.

    Since 2022, SPPC has procured two batches of combined-cycle gas turbine (CCGT) schemes.

    Qassim and Taiba IPPs

    SPPC awarded contracts to develop the Qassim 1 and Taiba 1 and the Qassim 2 and Taiba 2 IPPs last year.

    A consortium comprising Riyadh-based Saudi Electricity Company and Acwa Power signed the 25-year power-purchase agreements with SPPC to develop and operate the Qassim 1 and Taiba 1 IPPs on 13 November. Each plant has a capacity of 1,800MW. The two projects are valued at SR14.6bn ($3.9bn).

    A team comprising the local Jomaih Energy & Water, France’s EDF and the local Buhur for Investment won the contract to develop the 1,800MW Qassim 2 and 1,800MW Taiba  2 IPP schemes.

    Each project will be developed on a build-own-operate basis by the winning consortiums, which will be 100% owned by the successful bidders.

    Remah and Nairiyah IPPs

    Meanwhile, the final consortiums of bidders are being formed for the contracts to develop and operate the Remah 1 and 2 and Nairiyah 1 and 2 IPPs, as MEED previously reported.

    Bids for the contracts are due on 30 June, although SPPC is understood to be reviewing whether an extension is necessary.

    Remah 1 and 2, previously known as PP15, will be located in Saudi Arabia’s Central Region, while Nairiyah 1 and 2 will be in the Eastern Region. Each IPP will have a capacity of 1,800MW.
    Jennifer Aguinaldo
  • Kuwait receives South Sabah Al-Ahmed housing bids


    12 June 2024

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    Kuwait's Public Authority for Housing Welfare (PAHW) has received bids from contractors for a tender covering the infrastructure development works at its South Sabah Al-Ahmed township project in Kuwait's Al-Asimah Governorate.

    The contract includes the infrastructure works for 6,568 residential units in neighbourhoods N1, N2, N3 and N11.

    The tender was issued on 31 March and the bids were submitted on 10 June.

    The bidders include:

    • Avic International Holding Corporation (China) ($293m) 
    • Sinohydro Corporation (China) ($317.4m)
    • Mohammed Abdul Mohsen Al-Kharafi & Sons (Kuwait) ($329m)
    • Kuwait Factories Construction & Contracting Company (Kuwait) ($363.4m)
    • China State Construction Engineering Corporation (China) ($373.9m)
    • Combined Group Contracting Company (Kuwait) ($385.1m)
    • Al-Ghanim International (Kuwait) ($415.1m)
    • United Gulf Construction Company (Kuwait) ($460.4m)
    • Bayan National Construction Contracting Company (Kuwait) (undisclosed)

    UK-based Foster + Partners designed the masterplan for the South Sabah Al-Ahmad township project. The scheme includes constructing a residential development with over 11,000 housing units.

    The South Sabah Al-Ahmad project covers an area of 6,150 hectares and is located 70 kilometres south of Kuwait City.

    In May, PAHW awarded two contracts worth over $550m for the development of roads and infrastructure at the South Sabah Al-Ahmed township project.

    The first contract, for the roads and infrastructure networks for 7,623 residential units in the N5, N7, N9 and N10 neighbourhoods, was awarded to Beijing-headquartered China State Construction Engineering Corporation. The contract is valued at KD93m ($304m).

    The other contract, for the roads and infrastructure networks for 6,189 residential units in the N4, N6 and N8 neighbourhoods, was awarded to Sinohydro Corporation. The contract is valued at KD78m ($255m).

    Kuwait construction market

    According to data from regional projects tracker MEED Projects, the construction sector has $7.8bn of projects under execution, making it the second-largest sector in Kuwait after transport in terms of projects under execution. 

    The largest subsector in terms of work under execution is mixed-use, with $29bn-worth of work under way, followed by residential with $11.1bn. 

    PAHW is the largest single client in construction, with $1.8bn-worth of projects under construction.

    About $49.5bn-worth of construction projects are in the pre-execution phases of development in Kuwait. The majority of the upcoming construction projects are in the design phase, followed by the study, bid evaluation and main contract prequalification stages.
    Yasir Iqbal
  • Morocco extends wind farms prequalification


    12 June 2024

    The Moroccan Agency for Sustainable Energy (Masen) has extended by one month the final day for interested companies to submit their statements of qualifications for a contract to develop and operate new onshore wind farms in the North African state.

    The 400MW Nassim Nord wind power programme includes two wind farms. The first is a 150MW extension to the existing Nassim Koudia Al-Baida wind park in the Fahs Anjra and Mdiq-Fnideq provinces.

    The second scheme, Nassim Dar Chaoui wind park, will be located in the provinces of Tangier and Tatouiane and will have a capacity of approximately 250MW.

    According to an industry source, Masen extended the prequalification submissions from 24 June to 24 July.

    The project will be implemented under a 30-year power-purchase agreement between Masen and the project company, which will include the successful bidder.

    Masen, either alone or with a Moroccan public entity, will take a 35% stake in both the project company and the operation and maintenance (O&M) company that will be formed for the project.

    Masen is expected to issue the request for proposals for the Nassim Nord wind projects in September, as MEED earlier reported.

    Owned by Masen and France's EDF Renewables, the Nassim Koudia Al Baida scheme is Morocco's first wind independent power producer (IPP) project, which had an initial capacity of 50MW.

    In 2022, additional financing from the  European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and Climate Investment Fund (CTF) aimed to double the plant's capacity, 

    2030 target

    Morocco has set a target for 52% of its energy to be produced from clean energy sources by 2030, one of the most ambitious targets in the Middle East and North Africa region.

    Morocco aims to bring its renewable capacity to 10,000MW by 2030. Of the total, solar PV is expected to account for 4,500MW, wind for 4,200MW and hydroelectric for 1,300MW.
    Jennifer Aguinaldo
  • Oman seeks interest in old airport terminal PPP


    12 June 2024

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    Oman Airports Management Company has issued an expression of interest (EoI) notice to redevelop the old terminal building at Muscat International airport.

    The contract covers the redevelopment, operation and management of the terminal building on a build-operate-transfer basis.

    The notice was issued on 11 June and the deadline for submission is 9 July.

    The companies participating in the EoI round will be qualified to participate in the request for proposal process in the next round.

    Earlier this year, Naif Al-Abri, chairman of the Oman Civil Aviation Authority, said: "The old Muscat airport terminal building will be redeveloped as a multi-purpose facility, with plans to convert it into an aviation museum that will showcase the history of aviation of the country.”

    In 2020, Oman announced its National Aviation Strategy 2030, which aims to attract an investment of $3.6bn in airport cities over 20 years.

    The country plans to expand its navigation infrastructure and open the sector to private international investors by granting concessions for managing and operating local airports and aviation-related services.

    Oman's aviation sector has demonstrated positive growth and recovery, according to GlobalData.

    A recent report by the National Centre for Statistics and Information shows that airports in Oman have witnessed a significant increase in inbound and outbound passenger numbers.

    The total number of passengers travelling through airports in Oman by the end of January 2024 increased by 21.6% to reach 1.4 million, compared to 1.1 million by the end of January 2023.

    This data reflects the resilience and rebound of the aviation sector in Oman, indicating a recovery in travel and tourism activities.
    Yasir Iqbal
  • Saudi Arabia seeks firms for Rub Al-Khali power plant


    12 June 2024

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    Saudi Arabia's Zakat, Tax & Customs Authority (Zatca), in collaboration with the National Centre for Privatistion & PPP (NCP), has invited companies to prequalify for a contract to develop a hybrid power plant at the Empty Quarter (Rub Al-Khali) land port.

    The project aims to reduce the use of diesel fuel by using renewable energy, and to ensure long-term power supply at the Empty Quarter land port.

    According to Zatca, the project will be implemented in partnership with the private sector under a design, build, finance, operate, maintain and transfer contract model for 25 years in addition to the construction period.

    In addition to building and operating the power plant, the project scope includes ensuring that the facility operates to defined requirements and output specifications and managing the power generation and the connection to the Zatca interface point for the entire project term.

    The deadline for companies to submit their prequalification applications is 21 July.

    This is the latest project announced by Zatca and the NCP. Other projects include the development of water and sewage treatment plants and residential buildings at several land ports in the kingdom.
    Jennifer Aguinaldo
  • Contractor appointed for $122m Dubai hospital


    12 June 2024


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    Dubai-based contracting firm General Construction Company has been appointed as the main contractor for Prime Heart & Lung Hospital in Dubai Healthcare City.

    The estimated $122m hospital will be a nine-storey building with a built-up area of over 33,000 square metres.

    Local firm Lacasa Architects & Engineering Consultants has replaced Stantec as the project consultant.

    The project is being developed by UAE-based Prime Healthcare, which broke ground on the facility in December 2022.

    The project was put on hold after initial piling works, which were undertaken by Dubai-headquartered Stromek Emirates.

    The construction works have resumed on the site.

    According to an official statement, the hospital will have three specialised centres dedicated to cardiology, pulmonology and oncology.

    The heart centre will offer a range of invasive and non-invasive diagnostic procedures, as well as interventional procedures for coronary artery disease, valve disorders, structural heart disorders and arrhythmias. 

    The lung centre will address all aspects of the diagnosis, management and treatment of respiratory conditions. 

    At the Marie Curie cancer institute, patients will have access to a comprehensive cancer care system.

    GlobalData expects the construction industry in the UAE to expand by 4.6% in real terms in 2024, supported by improved investments in transport, industrial and residential construction projects. The industry’s growth in 2024 will also be supported by private-sector investments in the real estate sector. 

    The institutional construction sector is expected to grow in real terms by 4% in 2024 and register an annual average growth rate of 3.3% in 2025-28, supported by investments in healthcare and education building projects.
    Yasir Iqbal
  • Feed contracts awarded for Abu Dhabi chemicals plants


    11 June 2024

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    Front-end engineering and design (feed) contracts have been awarded for three chemicals production plants that will be built in the Taziz Industrial Chemicals Zone in Abu Dhabi’s Ruwais.

    Germany-headquartered Thyssenkrupp Uhde has won feed contracts for an ethylene dichloride (EDC) plant and a chlor-alkali plant, according to sources.

    France-based Technip Energies has won the feed contract for a polyvinyl chloride (PVC) facility, sources told MEED.

    The three planned chemicals plants are part of a scheme known as Project Salt. It is among the main investments in the first phase of development for the upcoming petrochemicals derivatives complex by Taziz.

    Taziz – a 60:40 joint venture of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) and Abu Dhabi’s industrial holding company ADQ – first announced the EDC, chlor-alkali and PVC plants in December 2021. India’s Reliance Industries was named as the main investor in the chemicals plants at the time.

    Reliance is understood to have pulled out of Project Salt and has been replaced by ChemOne, the sources further said.

    Taziz Industrial Chemicals Zone

    Since 2021, Taziz has attracted investments from several foreign investors for its planned chemicals projects in the under-construction Taziz Industrial Chemicals Zone in Ruwais.

    In addition to the three chemicals plants planned under Project Salt, a joint venture of UAE-based Fertiglobe, South Korea’s GS Energy Corporation (GS Energy) and Japanese investment firm Mitsui & Company (Mitsui) have invested in a “world-scale” blue ammonia production facility in the Ruwais derivatives complex.

    The joint venture recently awarded the construction contract for the 1 million-tonnes-a-year blue ammonia facility to Tecnimont, after having awarded the engineering and procurement contract to the Italian contractor in February last year.

    Separately, Taziz and Switzerland-based energy and chemicals company Proman also signed a shareholder agreement for a planned methanol project in January last year. The two companies initially announced the planned project in March 2022.

    MEED recently reported that contractors were preparing technical bids for the planned methanol plant, which will be the UAE’s first. The projected production capacity of the methanol complex is 5,000 metric tonnes a day, or 1.8 million metric tonnes a year.

    In December 2021, Taziz secured agreements from eight UAE-based entities for investments in its planned chemicals projects in Ruwais. The agreements marked the first domestic public-private partnership in Abu Dhabi’s downstream oil and gas and petrochemicals sector.

    ALSO READ: Abu Dhabi launches next Taziz phase

    Regarding infrastructure to support units in the chemicals production zone, Adnoc has signed an agreement with Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (Taqa) to develop a cogeneration power facility in Ruwais.

    Separately, Netherlands-based VTTI has recently received commercial bids from contractors for a project to build a chemicals handling and export terminal at the Taziz Industrial Chemicals Zone – a scheme known as Project Landing.

    Taziz has planned seven petrochemicals derivatives projects as part of the first phase of its industrial chemicals zone, which are:

    Anchor product



    Water treatment, metallurgy and textiles

    Ethylene dichloride

    Housing, infrastructure and consumer goods

    Maleic anhydride

    Piping, construction and heavy transport


    Energy, consumer goods and pharmaceuticals

    Blue ammonia

    Agriculture, apparel and energy

    Isopropyl alcohol

    Healthcare and cosmetics


    Automobiles, adhesives, food production and storage

    Chemicals production is a priority sector for Operation 300bn, the UAE’s industrial growth strategy.

    The industrial strategy is being overseen by the Industry & Advanced Technology Ministry, which aims to raise the UAE industrial sector’s contribution to the national GDP to AED300bn ($81.7bn) by 2031.

    ALSO READ: Taziz signs up tenants for light industrial cluster
    Indrajit Sen
  • Jordan Irbid wastewater project secures financing


    11 June 2024

    Water Authority of Jordan (WAJ) has secured a financing package totalling $30m for a wastewater treatment plant project in West Irbid.

    The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) said it signed an agreement with Jordan’s Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation to extend a project financing package to the WAJ.

    The package consists of:

    • an EBRD loan of up to $19m
    • an investment grant of $8m  from the UK government under the High-Impact Partnership on Climate Action
    • and a €2.75m investment grant from the EU under its Neighbourhood Investment Platform

    According to the EBRD, the funding will help provide essential wastewater services and connections to communities and refugees in Jordan's West Irbid region.

    "The financing will contribute to the construction of a new and efficient wastewater treatment plant in the area of West Irbid to complement the wastewater networks financed by the EBRD in 2018," the bank said.

    Once completed, the new facility will be able to treat 12,000 cubic metres a day, enhancing the quality and treatment of wastewater in the West Irbid region.

    It will provide sanitation services to surrounding towns for the first time and serve both local communities and refugees who have settled in the area.

    Jordan is among the top 10 water-stressed nations globally, facing severe water scarcity challenges, a growing population and a significant influx of refugees.

    According to EBRD, the city of Irbid is a significant hub of agriculture and economic activity but lacks sustainable water solutions.

    The funds will be accompanied by a comprehensive technical cooperation package by the EBRD to support project preparation and implementation.

    A further technical cooperation programme will be provided to assist the WAJ in introducing inclusive procurement practices, fostering capacity building and providing on-the-job training opportunities for underserved groups, including youth, women and people with disabilities.

    Other wastewater treatment plant projects are under way in Jordan.

    In February last year, the kingdom's Water & Irrigation Ministry and the local firm Arab Towers Contracting Company signed an agreement worth €79.5m for the design and implementation of a wastewater treatment plant in the Ghabawi region.

    EBRD agreed to provide €41.3m loan while the EU agreed to provide a €30m grant for that project.
    Jennifer Aguinaldo
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