Saudi receives bids for nuclear build

Saudi Arabia has received bids to build the kingdom’s first nuclear power plant, according to its Finance Ministry.

The statement’s key projects achievements in fiscal year 2022 indicated: “The completion of several major works for the project to build the first nuclear power plant in the kingdom, and the receipt of bids to build the first nuclear power plant in the kingdom on 31st December 2022.”

Earlier this month, Saudi Arabia and France signed an agreement to cooperate on nuclear, clean hydrogen, renewable energy and electricity interconnection projects.

The majority of its nuclear power capacity will be developed through conventional, large-scale nuclear facilities. The country also plans to develop atomic energy through a series of smaller, system-integrated modular advanced reactor technology (Smart) nuclear power plants in partnership with South Korea.

Last year, Saudi Arabian power company ACWA Power signed a multi-billion dollar agreement to build the world’s biggest in shore wind farm in Uzbekistan.

The 1.5GW Karakalpakstan wind project, located in north-western Uzbekistan, would be one of the biggest single-site onshore wind projects in Central Asia and the world. The heads of terms agreement signed between ACWA Power and Uzbekistan’s Ministry of Energy and Ministry of Investment & Foreign Trade lays the foundation on which a power purchase agreement and investment agreement for the facility would be initiated.

Valued at US$2.4billion, the project is expected to achieve financial close by the end of 2023 and be fully commissioned by the first quarter of 2026. When complete, the facility is expected to power 1.65 million households and offset 2.4 million tonnes of carbon emissions per year.