Local power plant developer Mass Global Investment Company has decided to complete the construction and operation of its three gas-fired power plants in the Kurdistan region of Iraq using its own funds.

Mass Global had originally intended to partially finance the projects, worth $1.6bn in total, in a project finance structure with debt sourced from international banks.

However, according to the company’s chairman Ahmad Saleh, the company has abandoned plans to include external capital due to “unrealistic conditions by the financiers”.

The company’s 500MW power plant at Irbil has been in production since May 2008 and the final unit began operation in November 2008.

Construction of the two remaining projects has commenced. The 750MW Sulaimaniyah facility has 500MW capacity already online and the final 250MW came on stream in February. Meanwhile, contracts for the Irbil plant extension will come on stream before end of April (MEED 17:2:10).

The company’s 500MW power plant at Dohuk will consist of four units, the first of which will enter into operation by August 2010, while the others will be complete by the end of 2010.

All power from the project will be sold to the Kurdistan Regional Government electricity ministry.

Mass Global’s future plans include a scheme to convert the simple-cycle technology employed at each of the projects into combined-cycle facilities.

Discussions with a host of international companies for the conversion of the Arbil plant to a combined cycle facility started in early March.

The company expects this process to cost about $1 billion, which it intends to finance through revenue from power sales.