Companies expected to bid for the project include Italy’s Danieli & Company, Germany’s SMS Demagand Austria’s Voest Alpine Industrieanlagenbau (VAI), which built the original Hadeed complex in Jubail. It is understood that the three firms were prequalified earlier this year to bid for the project, which is part of Hadeed’s programme to increase its flat products capacity to 2 million tonnes a year (t/y) from the present 1 million t/y.

A tender calling for a doubling in capacity of Hadeed’s direct reduction iron (DRI) facility is expected to be released in May. Bid documents are also being drawn up and prepared for release later this year for another electric furnace, ladle furnace and continuous slab caster.

Hadeed and Danieli are also close to signing a SR 54 million ($14 million) contract for the installation of a vacuum degassification unit in the plant, following the issue of a letter of intent to the Italian company in February. The facility will improve the quality and add new steel grades to Hadeed’s flat products range, to be used in the manufacturing of sour gas and oil pipelines as well as in industrial appliances and vehicles.

Under the expansion programme, Hadeed also plans to raise its long products capacity to 3 million t/y from the existing 2.5 million t/y. The bulk of the new capacity is expected to be sold on the domestic market (Saudi Arabia, MEED Special Report, 28:3:03, pages 42-44).