The Saudi Arabian Mining Company (Maaden) has received bids from contractors to build 800 villas at Jubail in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia.

About 10 contractors submitted prices to the kingdom’s national mining company on 25 August. Australia’s WorleyParsons is consultant for the housing scheme.

The development is designed to provide housing for Maaden’s employees that will be working at its $10.8bn aluminium complex, which is currently under construction at the Ras al-Khair Industrial City, located in the Eastern Province.

Maaden, in joint venture with the US’ Alcoa, is currently developing a 380,000 tonnes a year (t/y) rolling mill at the Ras al-Khair complex and production is due to start in tandem with a 740,000-t/y aluminium smelter in 2013. The rolling mill is the largest to be built outside of China in the past 20 years and will provide aluminium sheet to food packaging manufacturers in the kingdom and the rest of the GCC.

In March, Maaden and Alcoa awarded South Korea’s Hyundai Engineering & Construction a $1.5bn engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract for a 1.8-million-t/y alumina refinery to be built at the Ras al-Khair complex.  

Maaden holds a 74.9 per cent stake in the aluminium complex, while Alcoa owns the remaining 25.1 per cent.