Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) yesterday signed contracts worth SR 6.3 billion with national firms to import cables required for boosting its power distribution network.
Ali bin Saleh Al-Barrak, CEO of the company, said SEC would give connections to more than 420,000 new subscribers every year. He said the cables are imported to install 36/13.8KV and 400V lines of the company’s supply network within 12 months.
“The import of cable will help SEC to construct new supply lines and renovate existing ones,” Al-Barrak said, adding that it would help ensure continuous power supply.
SEC’s electricity production rose by 8.8 percent to 207,000 gigawatt/hour in 2012 compared to the previous year, he said. The maximum load on the network rose by 7.4 percent to 51,939MW during the year.
“This demand has been met by increasing the company’s generation capacity by 5.7 percent every year reaching 44,371MW by the end of 2012,” said Al-Barrak.
According to the company’s annual report for 2012, electricity power demand in the Kingdom is growing at the rate of 8 percent while the number of subscribers grew by 6.2 percent to reach 6.7 million in 2012.
The company implemented a number of important projects last year at a total cost of SR 21.8 billion to meet the country’s growing electricity demand, the report said.
The company’s actual generating capacity rose by 2.8 percent to 43,083MW in 2012 while available capacity rose by 4.8 percent to 53,588MW. Total length of the distribution network reached 51,881 km while 69/13.8KV network reached 221,845 km.
Total sold power reached 240,288 gigawatt/hour, with an increase of 9.4 percent compared to the previous year.
During the year, the company added 2,039MW to its network by opening 30 new gas turbine units at existing plants. The company’s plan to the link the power network in different parts of the Kingdom with a single grid has been completed by 96 percent, SEC said.
The year 2012 also witnessed the launch of 30 new transformers and giving connections to 414,000 new subscribers and 194 housing complexes. “SEC intends to increase the generating capacity of existing plants by 50 percent,” the report pointed out.
SEC plans to spend $ 80 billion over the next 10 years to meet Saudi Arabia's rising demand for electricity. The country needs in excess of 30,000MW extra capacity by the year 2020. SEC plans to add approximately 4,000MW over the next 12 months, with another 8,000MW by 2014, to raise the total installed capacity in the Kingdom to 95,000MW by 2020.
The company is also trying to supplement its supply with solar energy. The government has already announced plans to invest SR 408.75 billion to produce 41GW of solar energy by 2032.
SEC employs more than 29,000 and 87.58 percent of them are Saudis. As a result of its strong credit rating, SEC received a loan of SR 5.25 billion from the Export-Import Bank of Korea. The company has issued an international sukuk of SR 6.6 billion.
Reproduced with permission from Arab News