Bidders for the Shuqaiq independent water and power project (IWPP), currently out to tender, will be required to bring on board $600 million in committed financing facilities with their submissions, Jeremy Thirsk, EMEA head of energy, project and export finance at HSBC, told the MEED Middle East Project Finance 2006 conference in Doha on 1 March. The committed facilities will account for about 50 per cent of the estimated debt requirement for the project, based on an 80:20 debt/equity split.
Bidders will also be required to bring on board a minimum of one international bank and a maximum of two local banks. In a further financing innovation, an initial public offering (IPO) of up to 49 per cent of the developer's 60 per cent stake in the project company will be contemplated and allowed after completion. Bids for the 850-MW, 47 million-gallon-a-day (g/d) project are due on 30 July, with financial close targeted by the end of May 2007. A pre-bid conference was held in Riyadh on 20 February.The next scheme to come to market in the Water & Electricity Company (WEC) programme will be the Ras al-Zour IWPP, with a request for proposals (RFP) due to be issued early in the fourth quarter. The planned capacity of the plant has been increased to 3,000 MW and 227 million g/d.