A consortium led by Marubeni Corp is reported to have placed the lowest bid for Dubai’s first independent power project, considerably enhancing its chances of winning the deal. The project is estimated to be worth $1.2 billion (93 billion yen).

Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (DEWA) has hitherto been the monopoly power generator in Dubai. But in response to its 2009 debt crisis the government revised the law in April to allow private companies to participate in independent power projects there.

The project cals for a natural gas power plant with a capacity of 1.6 GW to be located in southwestern Dubai and constructed by the end of 2015. All its output is to be sold to DEWA under a 25-year contract.

DEWA will take a 51% stake in the company that will be created to undertake the project, while the remaining 49% interest would be split 40%, 40% and 20% respectively among Marubeni, Abu Dhabi National Energy Co. and South Korea’s SK group.

DEWA will decide the bid winner by March 2012 after assessing the proposals of the four leading consortia.