Swiss power firm wins $160m Kuwait orders

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Swiss power group ABB has announced that it has won orders worth about $160 million from the Ministry of Electricity and Water to build substations in the Gulf state.

The company said the work will help strengthen the country's power grid and support its growing infrastructure. The orders were booked in the fourth quarter of 2013.

The orders won by ABB are for turnkey projects in Kuwait's north Rawdatain region and include the design, supply, installation and commissioning of two 300/132kv gas-insulated switchgear substations as well as the extension of three existing 132kV GIS substations.

The projects are scheduled for completion by 2016, the company said in a statement.

Kuwait has crude oil reserves in excess of 104 billion barrels accounting for around 10 percent of global reserves, the fourth largest in the world.

As a result, the petroleum industry is the biggest contributor to the national economy, accounting for nearly half of the country's gross domestic product (GDP).

The government is making significant investments to enhance its power infrastructure in order to support a planned expansion of crude oil production from the current level of about 2.9 million barrels per day (bpd) to 4 million bpd by 2020.

These substations will reinforce the expansion of oil fields in the northern region of Rawdatain, and support Kuwait's long term vision to position it as a regional trading and business hub.

"The need to build up reliable and efficient power infrastructure in regions like the Middle East is an important growth driver for ABB" said ABB CEO Ulrich Spiesshofer.

The ABB Group of companies operates in around 100 countries and employs about 150,000 people.

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