The state-owned Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) has awarded the local Alfanar Construction a SR458m ($122m) contract to expand to the power plant serving Hail Province.

The expansion project will increase the generation capacity of the existing power plant by 160MW.

Alfanar Construction will be the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor for the project. The scope of its work includes supply and installation two 80MW gas turbines, a heat recovery steam generator (HRSG), electrical transformers, a fuel condition unit and associated switchgear.  

The Hail expansion project is being built on a fast-track basis and is scheduled for completion in the summer of 2011.

Rapid urbanisation in Hail province has put immense strain on the existing power utilities in the kingdom. At present, Saudi Arabia’s electricity consumption is forecast to grow at a rate of 5.5 per cent annually. The expansion at the Hail power plant is indicative of a larger SEC initiative to address the problem.

The 156 million-square-metre Prince Abdulaziz bin Mousaed Economic City (Pabmec) is expected to create a heavy burden on Hail province’s electricity demand.  

The local office of Kuwait-based KEO International Consultants is scheduled to finish the masterplan of the estimated $8bn urban centre in July this year (MEED 16:6:10).   

In 2008, Alfanar Construction was awarded an estimated SR358m contract to expand the power plant in the southern city of Sharourah, near the Yemeni border. The extension works were completed in January this year.