Saudi Arabia received four bids for the first wind-power project it tendered to international companies, without revealing information about the offers.
The bidders for the 400-megawatt project are ACWA Power, the renewable energy units of European utilities Electricite de France and Enel, and Engie’s International Power, according to a notice Tuesday from the Energy Ministry’s Renewable Energy Project Development Office.
The Saudi Energy Ministry delayed a ceremony planned for Tuesday to open the bid envelopes, according to the notice. The ministry said it will announce a new date shortly, without saying why the ceremony was delayed.
Saudi Arabia, the world’s biggest oil exporter, plans to develop 9.5 gigawatts of renewable energy by 2023 in an initial push to reduce its reliance on crude and natural gas. The wind plant, to be located at Dumat Al Janda city in Saudi Arabia’s northwest, will be the first of its kind under the national program.
In February, Saudi Arabia awarded its first international tender, with ACWA Power winning the contest to build a 300-megawatt solar plant at Sakaka in the same region.
The northwest, which the government is seeking to develop, has some of the most favorable winds in the kingdom for producing power. State-owned Saudi Arabian Oil Co started a wind turbine at one of its industrial sites in the region in January 2017, the nation’s first such facility.
Saudi Arabia and Japan’s SoftBank Group Corp. signed a memorandum of understanding last month to develop 200 gigawatts of solar power capacity in the desert kingdom by 2030. With a price tag of $200 billion, the plan would add to the 65 gigawatts of generation capacity in the country at the end of 2014, according to government data.