Midlands Electricity Board of the UK has joined a US joint venture for a project to set up a private power station at Uch gas field.

The project involves building a 584-MW gas combustion turbine plant at the gas field, financed largely by private funds. The original joint-venture partners, now joined by Midlands, were Tenaska International and Hawkins Oil & Gas (MEED 29:10:93).

Midlands now holds 50 per cent, but its share will be reduced to 25 per cent when the project gets under way. ‘Other partners will come in. Certain multilateral lenders and the turnkey contractor will expect to take a stake,’ a Midlands representative says.

Financing for the scheme, estimated to cost $600 million, will be on a 80/20 debt/equity basis, according to government regulations. Part of the equity will be raised through a public share offering.

The sponsors are studying the government’s new power policy before appointing a contractor, they say. They are planning to complete the project before 1998 so they can profit from higher power purchase tariffs the government is offering to private power schemes set up before that date.