If it goes ahead, the 400MW facility will be the first IPP to be awarded in the country without an open tender process.

National Electric Power Company (Nepco) is asking the Electricity Regulatory Commission to app-rove an award to one of Jordan’s three existing power plant operators: Central Electricity Generating Company and Samra Electric Power Generating Company, and a consortium of Dubai-based AES Oasis and Japan’s Mitsui & Company. “The normal tendering process will not be quick enough,” says Ahmed Hyasat, director general of Nepco. “We need another IPP to be ready in 2010.”

Hyasat expects electricity demand to increase by about 7 per cent a year up to 2010.

Two gas turbines at the country’s first, 400MW IPP, at Al-Manakher, came on stream on 25 July. The final, 130MW steam turbine is expected to come on line in the first half of 2009.

A team of Korea Electric Power Corporation and Saudi Arabia’s Xenel Industries is the low bidder for Jordan’s second IPP, at Al-Qatrana. US-based Chadbourne & Parke is legal adviser to the lenders, while France’s BNP Paribas is the lead arranger. The 400MW facility is due to come on stream by early 2011.

Estonia’s Eesti Energia is also conducting a feasibility study for oil-shale electricity generation, due to be completed by 2011.