Cegco is expected to make an award in March or April after a two-stage evaluation. A shortlist of preferred bidders will be drawn up following technical evaluation. Commercial bids from the shortlisted companies will then be opened.

The new plant will consist of two gas turbines, two heat recovery steam generators and a steam turbine. The first unit is scheduled to be completed by summer 2005. Amman is expected to finance 30 per cent of the EPC project costs, with the remaining 70 per cent coming from Arab development agencies.

The original design specifications for the combined cycle plant issued for tender on 7 July included a water cooling system for the facility, with water to be supplied from the nearby Al-Samra water treatment plant. However, Cegco asked US project consultant Kuljian Engineering Corporationto rewrite the project specifications using an air cooling system after it failed to reach agreement with the Al-Samra water authorities over the quality, quantity and price of the cooling water that was to be supplied.

The project, which was originally planned as a 400-450-MW independent power project (IPP), is needed because of Amman’s pressing need for new electricity capacity (MEED 3:10:03).