|05 September, 2019

Tender documents for power plants this month: Lebanon's Energy Minister

The government plan seeks to ramp up energy production in the country, in a bid to provide state electricity 24/7

Lebanese Minister of Energy and Water, Nada Boustani Khoury speaks during an interview with Reuters at her office in Beirut, Lebanon, August 21, 2019.

Lebanese Minister of Energy and Water, Nada Boustani Khoury speaks during an interview with Reuters at her office in Beirut, Lebanon, August 21, 2019.

Reuters/Mohamed Azakir

BEIRUT: Energy Minister Nada Boustani Wednesday said tender documents for two new power plants would be completed and referred to Cabinet for approval before the end of September. In July, the ministry launched a prequalification round for the power plants - the first two of six that the government hopes to build over the next six years, as part of an electricity plan it endorsed in April.

The government plan seeks to ramp up energy production in the country, in a bid to provide state electricity 24/7.

It is hoped that this goal will be achieved as soon as possible, perhaps as soon as the end of 2020.

The plan first envisions temporary power generation units closing the roughly 1,500 megawatt electricity deficit, before permanent power plants come online.

The first two power plants are set to be built in southern Zahrani and northern Selaata, and will eventually produce 550 MW of power, according to the plan.

Lebanon’s peak electricity demand last year sat at almost 3,500 MW, while production hovers at about 2,050 MW.

Boustani also said Wednesday that she would hold a meeting next week on the topic of floating liquefied natural gas terminals that are supposed to supply Lebanon’s new power plants with fuel.

LNG is cheaper, less polluting and more efficient than the heavy fuel oil currently used in Lebanon’s power plants.

The Energy Ministry has carried out tenders for the construction of three such LNG terminals, known as floating storage and regasification units, or FSRUs, and recently referred its report on the results of the tender to Cabinet.

For companies submitting tenders to construct Lebanon’s new power plants, knowing the results of the FSRU tenders is important, as the sourcing of fuel will affect their bids.

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