Saudi Arabia opens bids for first utility-scale wind farm

TRME REPDOThe US$500mn wind farm will generate enough power to supply up to 70,000 Saudi households. (Image source: MEIM)The Renewable Energy Project Development Office (REPDO) at the Ministry of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources (MEIM) in Saudi Arabia hosted the bid opening ceremony for its Dumat Al Jandal 400MW wind project

The project will be Saudi Arabia’s first utility-scale wind farm and is the second tender issued by MEIM as part of the National Renewable Energy Program (NREP) under the auspices of the King Salman Renewable Energy Initiative.

“The kingdom’s first utility-scale wind project opens a new chapter in our journey towards a diversified energy mix. The development of a wind energy industry in Saudi Arabia is an important component of our wider industrial diversification strategy. The US$500mn Dumat Al Jandal wind farm in the northern Al Jouf region will generate enough power to supply up to 70,000 Saudi households as it connects to the northern electricity grid,” said HE Khalid Al Falih, Saudi Arabia’s minister of energy, industry and mineral resources.

REPDO stated that the bid opening results announced do not represent a ranking of bidders or a bidder’s compliance with RFP requirements of the project, nor do they constitute a determination by REPDO of the outcome of the bidding process. REPDO will now evaluate the bids received to verify compliance with the requirements of the Request for Proposal (RFP).

The project will be awarded on 18 December 2018, backed by a 20-year power purchase agreement with the Saudi Power Procurement Company (SPPC). The bid opening was live-streamed through a webinar that saw over 350 participants on 23 July.

The RFP for the 400MW wind project in Dumat Al Jandal was issued on August 29 2017. Four bids were submitted by pre-qualified consortia lead by international and regional renewable energy developers ACWA Power; EDF Energies Nouvelles; Enel Green Power S.p.A. and International Power SA, Dubai branch (ENGIE). 

Dumat Al Jandal was chosen for the Kingdom’s first utility-scale wind power project after predevelopment studies showed a strong mixture of Class II and Class III wind capabilities on the site. The average annual generation from the wind plant is expected to be around 1.4 TWh.

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