Saudi Arabia is moving ahead with efforts to upgrade its transmission and distribution (T&D) infrastructure, with local utility Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) having awarded projects worth a total of $476m in recent months.

The largest project is a contract worth $184m awarded to Local Saudi Services for Electro Mechanic Works. The engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor is planning to start works on 1 April, which will involve installing 227 kilometres of 380kV overhead power lines. The work is expected to be finished in September 2015.

Once complete, the transmission scheme will supply power from the proposed Yanbu 3 power plant to the city of Medina. In December 2012, South Korea’s Samsung Engineering was awarded the contract to build the $3bn Yanbu 3 power plant, which will have a power generation capacity of 3,100MW.

The other contracts awarded by SEC for T&D schemes include a $176m deal awarded to Germany’s Siemens to build the 380kV Hail 3 substation, and a $116m contract to the National Contracting Company (NCC) to build a 380kV substation at state oil major Saudi Aramco’s Juaymah oil and gas refining terminal. The two substation projects are expected to be completed in 2016.