Amman has prequalified eight groups to bid on its proposed Fujeij wind farm.

About 30 companies responded to the tender which the Energy & Mineral Resources Ministry issued in June 2009. The ministry and its adviser, the US’ CRA International, has reduced the number of bidders to eight groups.

The wind farm is to be built near Shobak, about 200 kilometres south of the capital.

Feasibility studies by the government have indicated that the proposed site would be suitable for an 80-100MW facility initially. This could be increased to 250MW at a later date.

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private sector investment arm of the World Bank, is advising the government on the project.

Amman also plans to launch a JD20m ($28m) fund soon to support the country’s renewable energy sector. The Fujeij wind farm is expected to benefit from this.

The Renewable Energy & Energy Efficiency Fund has been established as part of the recently passed Renewable Energy Law. Companies will be able to apply for support from the fund, which will be backed by the government and international donor agencies.

This could replace potential funding from the Global Environment Facility, a Washington-based multilateral organisation which provides grants for renewable energy initiatives in developing countries.