The Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (Dewa) has received eight bids from seven companies for an engineering consultancy contract on the Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Solar Park in Dubai.

The contract will involve providing consultancy services for the construction of a 400kV substation and an associated 400kV overhead line (OHL) at the solar park, which began commercial operation in October.

The lowest bid of AED12.9m ($3.5m) came from the UK’s Mott MacDonald, which submitted two separate bids for the tender. Serbia’s Energoprojekt submitted the second-lowest price of AED16.5m. This was followed by Mott MacDonald’s second price of AED17.5m.

Electricite de France submitted the fourth-lowest price of AED18.3m, which was followed by AED19.5m from Belgium’s Tractebel Enegineering.

The other bidders included:

  • Lahmeyer International (Germany) – AED23.1m
  • Poyry Energy (Finland) – AED24.5m
  • Velosi (Spain) – AED28.6m

The 13MW first phase is the largest operating photovoltaic (PV) solar plant in the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) region, and will generate 24 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of electricity a year. The project is powered by 152,880 photocell PV modules, connected to 13 step-up transformers. US-based First Solar was awarded the estimated AED124m ($33.8m) contract to build the first phase of the park in October 2012.

Dewa recently invited companies to submit bids for the advisory services contract for a 100MW independent power project (IPP), which forms the second phase of the emirate’s Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum Solar Park. Firms have until 4 December to submit bids for the advisory mandate.

When completed, the solar park will have a total capacity of 1,000MW. The park is scheduled to contribute 5 per cent of Dubai’s power generation resources by 2030, as part of the emirate’s Integrated Energy Strategy. The project is under the umbrella of the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy and operated by Dewa. The solar park is expected to receive AED12bn of investment by 2030.