September tender launch for Oman power system

OETC seeks consultant for long-term master plan for regional system

Oman, like Saudi Arabia, is battling to meet rising power demand.
Oman, like Saudi Arabia, is battling to meet rising power demand.

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The Oman Electricity Transmission Company (OETC) said it would issue tender documents next for consultants to bid to work on the master plan for the country’s main interconnected system.

The government body is seeking a long-term strategy for the main system, which covers Muscat, Buraimi and most of the South Batinah, Dakhliyah, Sharqiya, North Batinah and Dhahirah regions, serving around half-a-million users.

The plan will set out a guideline for new construction and upgrading existing infrastructure, and is an extension to the tender already launched for the country’s needs between 2014 and 2030.

The country is battling to meet its power and energy demands, which have risen in the last decade and is expected to grow by 9% every year up to 2018. OETC has already launched OR400m in projects to improve substations in addition to companies such as Mazoon Electricity Company.

Mazoon is currently developing two 20 MVA substations with new 33kV and11kV feeders in Khadhara Bu Rushaid in Suwaiq at South Batinah region, contracting Electrical Modern Centre this year, and has also mandated Civil Contracting Company for electrical power supply to Al-Maaqal, Wadi Kulbooh and Marwah Villages in Nizwa at Dakhilyah region.

Average electricity demand in the main interconnected system is expected to increase from 1,924MW to 3,464MW by 2017, and peak demand is expected to increase at the same rate, rising from 3,500MW to 6,317MW.

In May, Oman’s electricity demand reached a record 3,900MW and exceeded the country’s power-generating capacity, according to John Cuneen executive director of the authority for electricity regulation.

“We don’t expect blackouts” during the summer, Cunneen said at a conference in Muscat. “We are expecting to meet electricity generation demand even at these record levels.”

Last year, OETC has awarded ten projects worth OR116m, construction of Sur 220kv grid station and associated transmission lines between Sur and Jahloot - part of the infrastructure needed to send power from Sur around the country. Demand in Sur currently outstrips supply.

However, there is little specific mention of government spending on its electricity infrastructure in its latest budget, despite the specific figure of OR320m to be spent on its water services this year.

Tender documents for appointing a consultant for the master plan will be distributed from 21 September with a 17 October deadline.

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