US$1.7 billion power plant contract awarded by Oman



Oman has awarded France's GDF Suez a US$1.7 billion contract to build two power plants. A tender board official told Reuters, “GDF Suez has signed a 15-year contract with the government in a BOOT (build, own, operate and transfer) model for which the company will spend 700 million rials."

GDF's chief executive, Gerard Mestrallet, had earlier confirmed that Oman had picked his company as a preferred bidder for contracts to build the two combined cycled gas-fired Barka 3 and Sohar 2 power plants. According to the Omani official, the greenfield gas fired plants, which have a capacity of 750 megawatts each, are expected to be completed in 2013 and Oman will buy electricity from the company for 15 years then transfer the ownership to the government's Oman Power and Water Procurement Company. GDF Suez will own a 46 per cent stake in the projects.

Electricity demand is increasing at a rate of around eight per cent a year in Oman due to its expanding economy.

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