The selected developer will acquire the 687.5-MW power plant at Rusayl and carry out Barka phase 2, which is expected to have generation capacity of 450 MW and desalination capacity of about 20 million gallons a day (g/d). The existing 427-MW, 40 million-g/d plant at Barka was also implemented as an IWPP.

The selected advisory team will be responsible for five main tasks – capacity planning, assessment of the Rusayl Power Company sale, prequalification of bidders, managing the tendering process and preparation of project agreements.

Banks have also been invited to submit bids by 4 October for the financial advisory mandate on an IWP to serve the Sharqiyah region. Capacity is expected be about 10 million-15 million g/d. The facility is likely to be located at Sur and will use reverse osmosis (RO) technology. A consultant had been appointed when the plant was originally planned as a government project, but the scheme has since been on hold.

The Rusayl plant will be the first of the government’s power assets to be sold since the promulgation in July of the power sector privatisation law. The law decrees the sale of all state generation, transmission and distribution assets, with the exception of Rural Areas Electricity Company, Power & Water Procurement Company and the umbrella Electricity Holding Company. The legislation also states that all future power and water projects will be privately implemented unless there is insufficient interest from developers (Power, MEED Special Report, 6:8:04, pages 26-28).