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GCC leaders officially launch electricity grid

posted on 15/12/2009: 1053 views



Kuwait - Leaders of the Arab Gulf Cooperation Council have officially launched their electricity linkage project here Monday, a venture aims at providing electricity in a sustainable and competitive manner.

Leaders of Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Oman signed documents virtually at computer screens at the theatre hall in Bayan Palace that will pave way for the official launch of the first phase of the electricity linkage project.

The first US$1.2 billion phase will include Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Bahrain. A second phase will be designed to put in place infrastructure of the power grids in the UAE and Oman to enable them join the third phase which will ultimately hook all six GCC countries though a single network in the second quarter of 2011.

The cost of the electricity linkage project is estimated at US$1.6 billion.

The cost of the project has been shared by the GCC members each according to electricity surplus it is ready to give out.

Contributions of member states would depend on electricity production, meaning the more power you generate the more the financial contributions would be.

Saudi Arabia's contribution in the overall cost would be 31.6 percent, Kuwait's 26.7 percent, UAE would be 15.4 percent, Bahrain nine percent and Oman six percent.

Chairman of the Electricity Interconnection Authority (EIA) Yusuf Jahahi said earlier today that the annual operational cost of the project would be around US$50 million, and noted the venture would provide 5,000 megawatts from the overall electricity-production capacity of the GCC.

According to KUNA, The EIA Chairman went on to say that a GCC country would be supplied with electricity through the joint power grids if the power cut exceeded five hours. - Emirates News Agency, WAM

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