The first package to go out to tender was for the two 250-MW gas turbines. Japan’s Mitsubishi Heavy Industrieshas been selected for negotiations for this contract, based on its bid of $109 million. The contract is expected to be signed by the end of March. Bids have also been submitted for the 250-MW steam turbine package. The frontrunners for this estimated $30 million-35 million contract are understood to be Hitachi of Japan and Alstomof France. The lowest prices came from two Russian firms, but the Japanese and French companies made up ground in the technical evaluation because of the higher capacity rating of their turbines, project sources say (MEED 11:1:02).

A new closing date of 10 March has been set for the heat recovery steam generator package. Bids have also been invited from six groups by a 1 April deadline for the civil works package (MEED 1:2:02, Construction).

The EIB has agreed to lend Eur 150 million ($134 million) for the project. The Kuwait-based Arab Fund for Economic & Social Development is lending KD 27 million ($88 million), and the Jeddah-based Islamic Development Bank has agreed to lend $41 million.

The US/local Power Generation Engineering & Services Company (PGESCo)is the project consultant.