Jordan pushes forward with IPP work

13 September 2002

Three groups of international contractors have submitted bids to Tractebelof Belgium for the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) package on the Kherbet al-Samra independent power project (IPP). After three years of discussions with the government, Tractebel is close to reaching an agreement on the $300 million IPP, and is due to submit revised tariff proposals to the Energy & Mineral Resources Ministry at the end of September. The project has gained a new lease of life following the award on the Egypt-Jordan transmission line, which will deliver Egyptian gas to the plant when it comes on line in 2005 (MEED 30:8:02).

The exact capacity of the plant has yet to be finalised but is expected to be close to the 450 MW quoted in the original tender documents, which were prepared by K&M Engineering Consulting Corporation of the US, in partnership with local Nabeel Law Offices. The two companies are now working on a feasibility study for a second combined cycle IPP, which industry sources say is likely to be located close to the Al-Samra plant. Funded by the Jordanian government, with support from the US Trade & Development Agency, the study will culminate in a request for proposals (RFP), which is expected to be issued in the first quarter of 2004.

The first deliveries of gas through the Egypt-Jordan pipeline will be used to fuel the power station in Aqaba, which is being converted to gas-fired production by Paris-based Alstom. On completion of the Aqaba-Amman stretch, capacity will be raised to provide gas for the two planned IPPs.

Following the establishment of a regulatory commission for the power sector last year, a new law providing the framework for private sector investment is expected to be issued by the end of 2002. Jordan's total capacity now stands at 1,479 MW. Although 99 per cent of the population has access to electricity supply, demand is expected to grow by 4.5-6.5 per cent a year over the next decade. The National Electric Power Company(Nepco)plans to provide additional capacity of 100 MW in 2003, 100 MW in 2004, 450 MW in 2005 and 300 MW in 2008.

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