Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) plans to tender a 1,700MW steam independent power project (IPP) at Rabigh in Mecca Province in 2012.

According to head of SEC’s IPP programme Amer al-Swaha, a request for qualification (RFQ) will be issued to developers in early 2012 once land agreements and other permits have been secured. The project is to enter operation by 2017.

The power plant will be built near existing power plants at Rabigh. Rabigh Electricity Company (RABEC) is the owner of Saudi Arabia’s first IPP. 

Phase one of a previously tendered IPP at Rabigh is close to completion. The local Acwa Power is the project’s developer.

Once SEC has tendered contracts for the new IPP at Rabigh it will tender another project, also with a capacity of 1,700MW, at Bi’r Ad Dibba on Saudi Arabia’s western coast between Jeddah and Jizan. The Bi’r Ad Dibba IPP will be tendered in 2013 to meet an operational date of 2018.

Saudi Arabia recently tendered an IPP at Qurayyah with a capacity of nearly 4GW. Work started on the project in November.