The contract to construct two new gas turbines at the plant is expected to be signed by the end of March.

Bemco, the power division of local contractor Saudi Bin Laden, underbid National Construction Company (NCC), which tabled an offer understood to be between SR 277 million-280 million ($73.8 million-$74.7 million).

Local contractor Al-Toukhi Contractingand Athens-based Consolidated Contractors International Company (CCC)also entered the two-stage tender process.

The project is part of a broad capacity enhancement programme now being pursued by SECacross the kingdom. In November, Al-Toukhi won the contract to expand Rafha power plant in the Eastern Province by about 60 MW. In January, NCC was low bidder for the expansion of Arar power plant, also in Eastern Province, with a price of about SR 320 million ($85.3 million).