While the Ghubrah West and Duqm plant projects will follow different timelines, they will use the same consultants. The tender will call for bids from consortiums made up of a technical, financial and legal adviser.

The independent water and power project (IWPP) at Duqm could be coal-fired, making it one of the first facilities of its type in the region. The sultanate’s Authority for Electricity Regulation is understood to be evaluating the coal option.

South Korea’s LG International, Korea Southern Power Company and Oman Oil Company had previously commissioned two coal-related feasibility studies, which they submitted to Muscat in an attempt to encourage it to enter direct negotiations.

The first study focused on coal-mining prospects in Oman and was carried out by the US’ John T Boyd Company. A second study for the Duqm power plant was completed by UK-based PB Power (MEED 25:4:08).

The Ghubrah West IWPP involves the rehabilitation of an existing state-owned facility and the construction of a new plant. The developer will privatise the Al-Ghubrah Power & Desalination Company, keeping only the newest power and water units running.

The IWPP will include a 25 million-gallon-a-day reverse-osmosis desalination plant. The two plants will have a combined capacity of 800MW (MEED 6:8:08).