Planned Hassi R'Mel hybrid attracts healthy interest

25 June 2004
Renewable energy agency New Energy Algeria (NEAL)announced on 14 June that it had received expressions of interest from 12 companies and groups for the contract to develop a new solar/gas hybrid power plant at Hassi R'mel on a build-operate-transfer (BOT) basis. NEAL plans to issue the tender for the project on 1 September, with an award due by year-end. The 150-MW plant will have solar generation capacity of 25 MW and a 125-MW gas-fired unit.

The successful company will be required to take a 51 per cent interest in the project's capital, with NEAL and Banque Exterieure d'Algerie (BEA)taking a 34 per cent stake and the European Investment Bank (EIB) holding a 15 per cent interest.

The 12 companies to express interest include General Electricand CME International, both of the US, Cobra Instalaciones & Serviciosof Spain, Siemensand SolarMillennium, both of Germany, Canada's SNC Lavalin, US-based Black & Veatch, Japan's Mitsui & Company, France's Alstomand the US/local Brown & Root Condor.

NEAL was created in July 2002 to encourage domestic production, use and export of renewable energy. Its shareholders are state energy company Sonatrach, state power company Sonelgaz- each with a 45 per cent shareholding - and private industrial group Semouleries Industrielles de la Mitidja (SIM), which holds the remainder.

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