Namibian power utility NamPower has prequalified 13 potential engineering, procurement and construction contractors for a key work package at the proposed 150 MW to 300 MW Erongo coal-fired power station, which it says could be “fast-tracked” to begin commercial operation by 2016.
The project will be located about 10 km east of Arandis, after NamPower failed to secure stakeholder support to develop the project near the ocean, on Bird Island – Arandis is located midway between Swakopmund and Usakos.
The proposed project has a total estimated price tag of between R4-billion and R7-billion and has been divided into four work packages.
The 13 prequalified contractors have been identified from an initial list of 47 submissions for ‘Tender Package A’, which relates to the boiler, turbine, generator island and balance of plant related to the island.
They include China Machinery Engineering Corporation, China National Electric Engineering Company, China State Construction Engineering Corporation, Doosan Power Systems, Hanwha Engineering and Construction Corporation, Harbin Electric International Company, Marubeni Corporation, Mitsui & Company, SEPCOIII Electric Power Construction Corporation, Shandong Electric Power Engineering Consulting Institute Corporation, Shanghai Electric Group, SinoHydro Corporation, and the Techint-SENER joint venture.
The companies will now be invited to tender for the package, which will stipulate minimum local content thresholds and outline the utility’s expectations on the use of local labour and the training of labour.
The outcome of the prequalification processes for the civil works, earth works and rail siding works will be communicated in the foreseeable future.
NamPower is also liaising with NamPort, Grindrod-owned Walvis Bay Bulk Terminal and TransNamib to conclude the supporting infrastructure arrangements. A port expansion, or a new bulk goods jetty, will have to be completed before the power station is commissioned to handle bulk coal imports.
Namibia reportedly requires new baseload capacity by 2016 to avoid possible severe power outages and the country’s White Paper on Energy has the stated goal of having 100% of peak demand and 75% of yearly demand produced from local sources.
The Erongo project is earmarked for development ahead of the much-discussed 800 MW Kudu gas-fired power station proposed for development north of Oranjemund, and is underpinned by rising demand in the Central Namib region.
The final environmental-impact assessment study has been submitted to the Ministry of Environment, NamPower confirmed in early August.