Iraq’s Electricity Ministry has awarded a contract to France’s Alstom to build a 728MW power plant at Al-Mansuriyah in Diyala governorate in eastern Iraq. The contract, which is worth about €400m ($528m), was signed on 11 December.

The project is to be gas-fired and will use turbines supplied by the French company. It will comprises four units, based on Alstom’s GT13E2 gas turbine, and will be constructed under a turnkey contract, covering delivery of equipment and civil works.

The plant will serve the entire Diyala Governorate and part of Baghdad, located roughly 80 kilometres away. The first unit of the plant is scheduled to be operational in early 2013. Equipment will be manufactured in Alstom’s factories in France, Switzerland and Germany.

In a meeting with France’s Economy, Finance and Industry Minister Pierre Lellouche in October, the Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister for Energy Hussain al-Shahristani said the company would be awarded the contract (MEED 9:11:11).

In July 2010, Alstom, signed a memorandum of understanding with the Electricity Ministry for the development and modernisation of Iraq’s electricity infrastructure. Under this agreement, Alstom is currently rehabilitating unit 1 of the Najaf gas-fired power station, 160km south of Baghdad. The unit was out of operation for five years. The rehabilitation will allow the first turbine to deliver 60MW to Iraq’s electricity network.