BHEL signed the contract in August for the turnkey supply, erection and construction of the power plant, which is to be located 250 kilometres southwest of Tripoli near the proposed gas export pipeline to Italy. Construction of the plant, involving installation of four 156-MW gas turbines, is expected to take 30 months, with commercial start-up set for the end of 2006 (MEED 8:8:03).

BHEL was one of five companies to bid for the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract when Gecol first issued the tender in 1998. Italy’s Enelpowerwas initially selected to build the plant. However, the official award was repeatedly postponed and the contract was eventually cancelled. BHEL, which was placed second in the original bidding process, priced the reissued contract in two components – a local currency portion and a euro-denominated tranche (Power, MEED Special Report, 17:1:03).