Foreign partner selection begins for facility B

11 November 2005
The process of selecting a foreign partner for the Mesaieed independent power project (IPP) kicked off in early November, with international developers being invited to express their interest and submit qualifications by 21 November. The solicitation, issued by a steering committee made up of Qatar Petroleum (QP), Qatar Electricity & Water Company (QEWC)and Qatar General Electricity & Water Corporation (Kahramaa), stated that the plant, also referred to as facility B, would have a net output of 2,000 MW, almost double the original plan, and include no desalination (MEED 21:10:05).

The selected developer will take a 40 per cent stake in a new company set up to implement the build-own-operate-transfer (BOOT) scheme; the remaining 60 per cent will be held by QP and QEWC. The project company will sign a gas fuel agreement with QP for the duration of the 25-year power purchase agreement (PPA).

Under the proposed schedule, the steering committee plans to issue the request for proposals (RFP) to shortlisted developers on 7 December. The plant's commercial operation has been set for April 2008; all its output will be supplied into the grid. The project's technical consultant is Germany's Fichtner(MEED 22:7:05).

Kahramaa had been looking at a 2,500-MW Mesaieed power plant to be implemented in two phases. Phase 1 was expected to be about 1,000 MW and serve the grid, with the second phase primarily meeting the power requirements of the planned Mesaieed aluminium smelter, being developed by QP and Norway's Hydro.

The Mesaieed facility B project will be the third private power project involving foreign participation.

The first, involving the US' AES Corporationand Gulf Investment Corporationin Ras Laffan Power Company, was inaugurated last year, while the second, known as Q-Power and having the participation of the UK's International Powerand Japan's Chubu Electric Power Company, is under construction.

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