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Mon 14 Sep 2009 10:22 AM

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Kuwait signs $2.5bn General Electric, Hyundai power deal

Firms to build and operate Subbiya power plant in northern Kuwait to boost output.

Kuwait has signed a $2.5bn contract with General Electric Co and Hyundai Heavy Industries to build and operate a power plant in the north of the country, state news agency reported.

The Subbiya power plant, which is expected to come on stream in the summer of 2011, will produce 2,000 megawatts, or 20 percent of the country's current power output, KUNA said on Monday, citing Kuwait's Minister of Electricity and Water Badr al-Shuraian.

"The contract includes importing and assembly of six gas turbines that will produce 1,320 megawatts in addition to six steam turbines generating 700 megawatts," al-Shuraian said.

Last month, Kuwait chose General Electric to build the Subbiya plant after it had the lowest bid for about 760m dinars ($2.65bn).

The US giant beat other pre-qualified firms for the projects such as Germany's Siemens, Japan's Mitsui & Co and Marubeni Corporation, Spain's Iberdrola Ingenieria Y Construccion, and Canada's SNC-Lavalin Limited.

In April, Kuwait issued a new tender to build turbines for the plant in the north of the country, saying it expected the cost to be far less than earlier estimates in excess of 700m dinars.

Peak demand strains the capacity of the power grid in the desert state, where air-conditioning is widely used.

Kuwait, with one of the world's highest per capita power consumption rates, has said it plans to boost power capacity to around 16,000 megawatts from 10,000 MW by 2012. (Reuters)

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