The local Idea Polysilicon Company (IPC) has yet to make an award for the technology and engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract for its proposed $1bn polysilicon and solar wafer plant at Yanbu on Saudi Arabia’s Red Sea coast.

MEED reported in July 2013 that bids had been submitted and that an award was due to be made at the end of the year. However, a decision has yet to be made.

“The bidders are hoping IPC will make an announcement at the end of the second quarter [of 2014],” says a Saudi-based source familiar with the deal. “The bids have now been under evaluation for several months.” 

There are now only three contractors left in the race and each has formed a consortium with a technology provider that will supply the plant machinery. The EPC contractor will still be responsible for delivering the finished facility on a lump-sum turnkey basis.

The bidding companies and their respective Technology Partners are:

  • Chengda Engineering Corporation/Poly Plant Project (China/US)
  • M+W/Schmid Silicon Technology (Germany/Germany)
  • Samsung Engineering/GT Advanced Technologies (South Korea/US)

When completed, the plant will produce 10,000 tonnes a year (t/y), of which 4,000 t/y will be converted into solar wafers. The facility will create about 1,000 jobs.

IPC is based in Al-Khobar in the Eastern Province of the kingdom and comprises a consortium of businessmen from the GCC region. Marwan al-Ghurair, from the UAE’s Abdulla al-Ghurair Group, is a board member of the company.