SEC says power demand to grow 8-9% this year; to launch bidding for Qurayyah II soon
Saudi Electricity Co,
the Gulf's largest utility, may change its SR300bn ($80bn) 10-year investment plan as it speeds up delivery
of its power projects to meet state infrastructure demands, its
chief executive said.
State utility firm SEC has said it planned to invest the
funds in the 10 years to 2018 to boost capacity to at least
80,000 megawatts by 2020 from an installed capacity of 50,000
"We revised in 2010 and we made many projects earlier than
planned," Ali Saleh Al Barrak said in an interview.
He said the company will stick to its investment programme
for the time being but could revise it in 2013. "We will look at
this amount, this amount could change based on the market
The Gulf Arab kingdom will continue its $400bn state
investment plan -- the world's biggest stimulus relative to GDP
- until 2013 as planned, its finance minister said in January.
"Plans have been accelerated. In fact we have to accelerate
some of our projects and make them come earlier than planned
because of the economic growth and the government's decision to
build more infrastructure projects."
The firm plans to launch bidding for the second phase of
expansion of its Qurayyah power plant soon, Barrak said, while
it is now in the process of selecting the preferred bidder for
the first phase of the 1,800-2,100 MW Qurayyah
Demand for power in the kingdom is expected to grow 8 to 9
percent this year compared to around 10 percent a year earlier,
Government officials have repeatedly said that demand for
power was forecast to triple to 120 gigawatts by 2030 in line
with an expected rise in domestic fuel consumption to 8.3
million barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd) in 2028.
Barrak declined to comment on the rise of the fuel used to
fire their power plants. The country's deputy electricity
minister, Saleh al-Awaji told Reuters last month with the new
expansion in power capacity, Saudi Arabia would burn more crude
this year without giving figures.
SEC's generation capacity stands at around 48,000 megawatts
while demand is now 26,000 MW, he said.
During the summer, demand would rise to 46 gigawatts but the
company would still have a reserve margin of 2 GW, said Barrak.
Gulf countries have similar patterns of consumption, which
sees demand peak in the summer. They have taken measures to
connect their grids in an effort to stave off shortages.
"We don't expect any shortage in the summer in the
generation side."For all the latest energy and oil news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.