A consortium led by ACWA Power has been issued notice to proceed with the construction of the largest independent power generation project in the world, Qurayyah IPP, for Saudi Electricity Company.

The gas fired plant, to be developed on a build, own, operate basis will be located at Qurayyah on the eastern coast of Saudi Arabia adjacent to existing SEC facilities. It is the third of its type and the largest IPP being developed by SEC, representing another major development in the Saudi power sector to help meet the rapidly increasing power demand in the country. It will deliver 3927 MWe to SEC under a 20 year power purchase agreement starting in June 2014.

The project company Hajr Electricity Production Company was established by the winning consortium and SEC, each owning 50%. The consortium includes Samsung C&T and MENA Fund. Yousef Al Ouhali, executive managing officer of Hajr, said “The design production capacity will make it the largest IPP combined cycle gas fired power plant in the world once completed.”

Qurayyah IPP will consist of six identical units, each of 654.5 MW and comprising two gas turbines two heat recovery steam generators and one steam turbine. The Qurayyah IPP Plant is designed and will be constructed to comply with all applicable environmental laws, guidelines, regulations and standards set by World Bank, IFC and Saudi Presidency of Meteorology and Environment.

Siemens will provide all major equipment and electrical systems and Samsung C&T will Engineer, Procure and Construct the project as the EPC contractor to deliver the project.

Once completed, the plant will be operated by The First National Operation & Maintenance Company a subsidiary of ACWA Power under a long term operation and maintenance contract with Siemens providing parts and services for the gas turbines under a long term service Agreement with NOMAC.

Mr Al Ouhali said that “We are proud to be the project owner of Qurayyah IPP not only because it is the world’s largest combined cycle IPP, but most importantly the project will provide major economic advantage for Saudi Arabia.”

He said that “First: The project was bid with the lowest tariff possible thus delivering over SAR 2 billion of savings over 20 years to the economy of the Kingdom. Second the project is designed with the highest thermal performance possible, more than 52% efficiency or 14% more efficient than the traditional steam power plant exist in the Kingdom now, which makes it the most efficient in Saudi Arabia. This high efficiency will save the Kingdom more than SAR 2 million per day in fuel cost, using the present world natural gas price. Third: This high efficiency will also save the Kingdom’s natural resources, as the project will save more than 160 million cubic feet of natural gas per day of equivalent MW production.”