Bidders and interested companies are waiting for news on the main contracts to build the 3,780MW Taiba integrated solar combined-cycle (ISCC) power plant in Saudi Arabia.

The client, state utility Saudi Electricity Company (SEC), received proposals for the OEM (Original equipment manufacturer) and engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract in the last week of November 2016. According to sources close to the project, the bidding groups were believed to include the US’ GE, Germany’s Siemens and Japan’s Mitsubushi Power Systems (MHPS).

However, as of 8 February the client had still not awarded the contract or selected a preferred bidder. There is speculation in the market that the procurement model for the Taiba project may be switched to an independent power project (IPP) model as a result of Riyadh cutting capital expenditure programmes as a result of the fall in oil revenues. However, according to sources close to the scheme, no decision to switch the model has been made yet.

SEC had already received bids for a gas turbines component package earlier in 2016. MEED reported in March 2016 that SEC had received bids from 9 firms for the owner’s engineer role on the Taiba project. The client had also already received bids for a gas turbines component package in 2016.

The project is now more than a year behind schedule, with the initial deadline for technical bids having been set for 30 December 2015.

The integrated power plant will have a combined-cycle capacity of 3,600MW and will contain an 180MW solar component. It will be one of the largest generation facilities in the kingdom, and will cost upwards of $3bn to build.

The plant will be located in Taiba in the western Medina region of the kingdom.

The project is part of the kingdom’s programme to boost capacity to meet the rapidly rising demand for power, which is expected to increase from the current 62GW to 120GW by 2030.

On 10 November, SEC invited developers to submit expressions of interest (EoIs) for the planned 5,400MW PP15 project, which will be developed under the IPP model.