Several of the companies seeking prequalification have stated that they would like to form consortia with other interested developers. However, a clear indication of which companies will be teaming up together is not expected until the RFP has been issued.

The list of 16 contains four companies – France’s Total, Belgium’s Tractebel, the UK’s International Power and Japan’s Mitsui & Company – that already have assets in the Abu Dhabi generating sector. Asian companies are also well represented on the list, with five from Japan and one each from Malaysia and Singapore.

The project involves the purchase of the existing 192-MW, 38.7 million-gallon-a-day Mirfa plant and adding 600-700 MW of new generating capacity, which will also provide steam for the existing desalination units. Commissioning of the new power units is scheduled by May 2007.

In keeping with the model employed on Abu Dhabi’s four previous IWPPs, the foreign developer will take a 40 per cent stake in a new project company which will purchase, extend, own, operate and maintain the Mirfa station. The remaining 60 per cent will be held by ADWEA.

The advisory team on Mirfa is made up of HSBC (financial adviser), Germany’s Fichtner (technical), White & Case (international legal) and Simmons & Simmons (local legal).