Oman to install hybrid PV-diesel plants totaling 160 MW across 11 sites

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Oman’s Rural Areas Electricity Company (Tanweer) – a unit of state-owned Nama Holding – is planning to deploy around 159.5 MW of hybrid solar-diesel power generation capacity in non-interconnected areas of the sultanate.

Tanweer launched the pre-qualification process for the initiative in July. “The prequalification of received bids is currently ongoing and the results are yet to be announced,” a spokesperson from the company told pv magazine. “We have appointed the legal and financial advisors recently, whom which we are collaborating with to prepare the RFP to issue to prequalified bidders.” It is now planning to issue the request for proposals for the pre-qualified bidders in the second quarter of this year.

The hybrid plants will be developed as independent power producer (IPP) projects at 11 sites, which have already been identified by Tanweer, and that are expected to remain isolated over the next decades, due to the economic unviability of their potential interconnection.

The sites include, among others, the territory of Madha – an exclave of Oman, enclaved by the United Arab Emirates (UAE); and that of Masrooq, located close to the Saudi Arabian border. The list also includes Mazeira Island, which will host the largest project, consisting of 15.6 MW of solar and 56 MW of diesel generation capacity.

Overall, the 11 projects will have a combined capacity of 41.75 MW of PV and 117.77 MW of diesel.

The final bid evaluation is planned for June, while contracts for the projects’ realization should be awarded in August. “All sites are expected to be tendered together, but the tariff for each site may be different,” Tanweer said.

Oman’s sole procurer of electricity, Oman Power and Water Procurement Company (OPWP), which is also a member of Nama Group, is currently holding its own series of tenders for large-scale solar. Its projects are part of the Omani Government’s plan to add around 4 GW of renewable generation capacity by 2030.