Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) has invited bids to build a 2,400MW thermal power station at Shuqaiq, on the country’s west coast.

According to a source at SEC, contractors will have until October to submit technical bids for the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract. The technical bids will be assessed before financial offers are invited.

The project will be similar in size and scope to the Jeddah South project, which is currently under tender. Jeddah South will have a capacity of 2,400MW and bidders were asked to submit proposals for projects up to 2,640MW (10 per cent upwards flexibility). Six bids have been submitted for the Jeddah South project and are currently under review.

The projects are part of SEC’s ambitious programme to add generating capacity to the grid to keep pace with rapidly rising demand for power in the kingdom. By 2021, peak demand is forecast to reach 87.76GW. SEC is planning to have 131.63GW of capacity commissioned by the same year.

Most of the country’s power generation capacity is gas-fired, although Saudi Arabia has a policy of increasing its thermal generating capacity. The new projects at Shuqaiq and Jeddah South will help Saudi Arabia to achieve this.