A 200 MWe generating unit has entered service at the city of Qom, 120 km south of Tehran, the capital of Iran. The plant cost $145 million in foreign currency and $27 million in local currency to construct.

The unit is the second at the site. The first, with a capacity of 514 MWe, started supplying power in 1993.

Earlier, a 250 MWe plant also started up in the northwestern town of Khoy.

Iran is planning to increase its generating capacity by 1600 MWe each year. The country, which has power export contracts with Azerbaijan and Turkey, and expects its generating capacity to reach a total of 24,900 MWe by the end of March 1999.