Global: Tenders - Suez ready for more bids from abroad

EGYPT: Egypt's energy minister, Hassan Younis, has announced further details of a long-promised international tender for as much as 1GW of wind in the Gulf of Suez region.

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Younis revealed that the tender will be divided into two phases of 500MW, each comprising two projects of 250MW each. The first prequalification round was expected to be launched in January with the second following in July.

The 1GW tender represents the second part of a proposed 2.5GW provided by the private sector as part of Egypt's drive to speed up development and liberalise the energy market (Windpower Monthly, March 2009).

The government is targeting 7.2GW of installed wind power capacity by 2020, up from the 550MW that is currently turning. Developers will be able to bid for more than one project. Contracts will be awarded on a build, own and operate basis, in line with a 20-year power-purchase agreement with the Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company.

Ten bidders

The first block of 250MW was offered for tender in mid-2009. Ten companies and consortia qualified for the second bidding round (Windpower Monthly, February 2010), due this summer. Renewable energy consultancy GL Garrad Hassan is conducting a wind-measurement campaign on behalf of the shortlisted developers to support their individual bids.

The government will be keeping an eye on the prices achieved in the bidding rounds as it prepares the next stage in its strategy to boost wind power deployment, which is expected to be the introduction of fixed-price contracts or feed-in tariffs. According to local media reports, government proposals could be announced in 2012.

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