Ali Abad, Tabriz highlight BOT progress

19 November 2004
Iran's build-operate-transfer (BOT) programme of independent power projects (IPPs) is set to move forward significantly in the next four months. Iran Power Development Company (IPDC)says it is on schedule to sign energy conversion agreements (ECAs) with two Saudi-led developers by the end of the Iranian year in late March 2005, and a new partner has been selected for the Pareshar project (Iran, MEED Special Report, 2:1:04, page 34).

The Ali Abad project will be carried out by a development team headed by Saudi Ogerand including Japan's Sojitz Corporation. The project will involve the development of a 1,000-MW combined cycle power plant. The Tabriz project also has capacity of 1,000 MW and is to be developed by Saudi Arabia's Xenel Industries. IPDC says differences on both projects are being ironed out and negotiations are now moving to schedule.

A new, unidentified, partner has been brought on board for the Pareshar project, originally expected to be Iran's first IPP. The new partner replaces Italy's Sondel, which withdrew when it experienced financial problems. The other partners in the development group are Germany's Dillinger Stahlbauand Mapna International, a subsidiary of Iran Power Plants Project Management Company (Mapna). Negotiations are now understood to focus on the payment guarantee and comments made by the financial adviser on the terms of the ECA, which the group signed in 2001.

Of IPDC's other BOT projects, the 1,000-MW Shirvan project is moving slowly, with the Japanese development consortium led by Sumitomo Corporationpreparing new proposals. The Jalal project is also stalled, for which the prospective developer is Europe's ABB. If it goes ahead, the project will likely be relocated because a conventionally financed power plant has since been built at the original site.

The most progress is being made at South Isfahan, where the project is now more than 40 per cent complete. The developer is Mapna, in consortium with Germany's Ihag. An entirely new 500-MW BOT IPP was issued by IPDC for prequalification in October. An invitation to bid will be issued early in 2005 for the Assaluyeh-based project.

Iran's BOT programme is progressing in parallel to several 500-MW build-own-operate (BOO) projects being carried out by Iran Power Generation & Transmission Management Company (Tavanir), IPDC's parent company. Two ECAs have been signed with local state-owned investors for projects and another is now under negotiation. Tavanir says it will issue early next year a new international tender for another BOO IPP.

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