A joint venture of Saudi Aramco and Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) has shortlisted two of the four bidders for the Fadhili cogeneration independent power project (IPP).

The client, the Saudi Aramco and SEC joint venture, received bids from four groups on 1 November and has shortlisted two groups for final negotiations.

The two shortlisted groups are:

According to sources close to the project, the client is expected to make a decision and select a preferred bidder by the middle of March.

The project has slipped behind schedule, with the client having initially set a target of appointing a successful bidder in December and signing electricity and steam offtake agreements in mid-January.

The cogeneration project is scheduled to be developed on a 20-year power, water and steam purchase agreement (PWSPA), with Aramco the offtaker for the steam and water components and SEC the offtaker for the produced electricity.

The proposed IPP will have:

  • Total power capacity of 1,200MW-1,600MW
  • Total steam capacity of 3,190,000 pounds an hour
  • Water production capacity of 768.8 tonnes an hour

Fadhili IPP deadlines

Production: The project owner has set a target of early steam production by 1 April 2018

Commissioning: The planned initial commissioning date is 27 June 2019

Commercial operation: The final commercial operation date is scheduled for 31 January 2020

The project has already fallen behind the original schedule, with the owner having initially planned to issue tender documents in mid-September 2014. Tender documents were issued to prequalified developers in April 2015. The delay is understood to have been due to design-change requests by the owner, according to sources in the kingdom’s power sector.

The project owner will create a project company to develop the IPP, with the client holding 50-60 per cent of equity ownership and the successful developer holding the remainder.