Saudi Arabia invites bids for 300MW solar project

18 April 2017

Client has prequalified 27 companies to participate in tender

Saudi Arabia’s Renewable Energy Project Development Office (Repdo), which is part of the Ministry of Energy, Industry & Mineral Resources, has issued request for proposals (RFPs) to prequalified firms for the planned 300MW photovoltaic (PV) solar project at Sakara.

Prequalified developers have until 11 September 2017 to submit proposals for the planned 300MW project. Repdo is planning to appoint shortlisted bidders by 13 November and sign the power purchase agreement (PPA) by 15 January 2018. A final target date for financial close has been set for 28 February 2018, with the client aiming for the project to have been commissioned by 31 August 2019.

MEED recently reported that 27 companies had been prequalified to participate in the bidding process for the 300MW solar project, is part of the first round of procurement for the country’s National Renewable Energy Programme (NREP).

The renewables body has prequalified companies in three categories: managing member and technical member; managing member; and technical member. Companies that have not been prequalified as managing or technical member for the first round can still be involved in the projects as part of a consortium formed by a prequalified managing member and technical member.

Companies that have been prequalified to participate in the tender for the 300MW PV solar project at Sakara are:

Managing member and technical member

Managing member

Technical member

ACCIONA Energia Global (Spain)

Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar)

Canadian Solar

Acwa Power (local)

Cobra Instalaciones y servicios (Spain)

Enerparc Projects (Germany)

Belectric (Germany)

JGC Corporation (Japan)

Fotowatio Renewable Ventures (FRV) (Spain/local)

EDF Energies Nouvelles (France)

Nebras Power (Qatar)

GCL New Energy (Hong Kong)

First Solar International Middle East (US)

Korean Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO) (South Korea)

Hanwha Qcells (South Korea/Germany)

Enel Green Power (Italy)

SNC-Lavalin Arabia (Canada)

Iberdrola Renovables Energia (Spain)

Engie (France)

Sojitz Corporation (Japan)

Jinko Solar (China)

Marubeni Corporation (Japan)

Tenaga Nasional Berhad (Malaysia)

Trina Solar (China)

Mitsui (Japan)


TSK Electronica Y Electricidad (Spain)

Total Energies Nouvelles Activities USA (France/US)


Repdo issued prequalification documents on 20 February and received responses on 20 March. A special purpose vehicle, project company, will be formed for each project and will be 100 per cent owned by the successful bidder.

Under the 700MW first round, a 300MW PV solar project will be developed at a site in Sakaka in the Al-Jouf province and a 400MW wind project will be developed at a site in Midyan in the Tabuk province. The Sakaka and Midyan projects are being tendered separately. Later rounds of projects will include other forms of renewable energy such as concentrated solar power (CSP) and waste-to-energy schemes.

The energy ministry has appointed a team of advisers to provide legal, financial and technical consultancy services for the initial projects. Japanese bank Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation (SMBC) has been appointed as financial adviser, UK-based law firm DLA Piper will provide legal advisory and Germany’s Fichtner will undertake the engineering and technical advisory services role.

MEED reported in January that the ministry was going to push ahead with the initial 700MW of the first 3.45GW of renewable energy projects planned by 2020 in the first quarter of 2017. The NREP sets out a target for 3.45GW of renewable energy to be developed by 2020 under the National Transformation Plan (NTP), and for 9.5GW of renewable energy capacity to be established by 2023.

Repdo will report to a new renewable energy steering committee, chaired by the Minister of Energy, Industry & Mineral Resources Khalid al-Falih. The committee will include the heads of various government stakeholders in the kingdom including: King Abdullah City for Atomic & Renewable Energy (KA-Care), the Electricity & Cogeneration Regulatory Authority (ECRA), state oil major Saudi Aramco and state utility Saudi Electricity Company.

MEED reported in January that KA-Care will form the renewable energy monitoring agency (Remo) and monitor the projects under the NREP.

The start of the procurement process for the first 700MW round of renewables projects and clarification of the entities driving the country’s renewable energy sector will please the regional and international power and renewable energy sectors, which were left disappointed with the kingdom’s original 54GW renewable energy programme, launched in 2012. Following the publication of a draft white paper in early 2013 detailing plans for the initial renewable energy projects, no further progress with the programme was made.

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