By Andy Sambidge
ABB says it has been hired to build substations to supply King Abdullah Economic City
Swiss power giant ABB has won orders worth over $60 million for substations that will boost transmission capacity and supply electricity to the King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC).
The order was booked in the fourth quarter of 2013, the company said in a statement.
ABB has been tasked by the Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) to design, supply, install and commission an expansion of the 380 kV Haramain high-speed railway (HHR3) substation, which supplies electricity to KAEC at 110 kV.
With a total development area of 173 sq km, KAEC is located along the coast of the Red Sea, around 100 km north of Jeddah, the commercial hub of the country, and approximately an hour from the holy city of Islam, Makkah.
The initiative is part of an ambitious programme to make Saudi Arabia one the world's top ten investment destinations by bringing in foreign capital to help diversify its predominantly oil-based economy.
KAEC is also expected to create up to one million jobs for the youthful population of the country.
"The need to build up reliable and efficient power infrastructure in the Middle East is an important growth driver for ABB. We have a proven track record in Saudi Arabia and are pleased to continue supporting the development of the country's power network," said ABB CEO Ulrich Spiesshofer.
"These substations will strengthen the transmission grid and boost power supplies to support economic growth."
The ABB Group of companies operates in around 100 countries and employs about 145,000 people.