June 13 (Bloomberg) -- Baghdad Co. won a $130 million contract to build a 500-megawatt power station in central Iraq, said Masaab Serri, an Electricity Ministry spokesman.
The company is scheduled to build the natural-gas fired power plant within 18 months in Haidariya in the Najaf region, he said today in a telephone interview.
The other five bidders for the project were South Korea’s Hyundai Engineering & Construction Co., Metka SA of Greece, Turkey’s Enka Insaat & Sanayi AS, Lanco Infratech Ltd. of India and one unidentified Jordanian company.
Iraq faces electricity shortages eight years after the U.S.-led invasion that ousted President Saddam Hussein and its generation and distribution network have suffered from decades of conflict, sanctions and sabotage. The country sought bids this year to build more than 60 power plants to add more than 14,000 megawatts to the grid.
Iraq produces 7,000 megawatts and imports 1,000 megawatts while domestic demand totals about 14,000 megawatts, Iraqi Electricity Minister Raad Shallal said in April.
The Iraqi government energy committee decided to cancel tenders announced in December for the construction of four power plants to boost power-generation capacity by 2,750 megawatts. The bids were for a 1,250-megawatt plant near Basra, and three 500-megawatt plants in the cities of Samawa, Diwaniya and Amarah.
“These proved to be non-profitable for the Electricity Ministry, as the tenders were for building and operating the stations,” Serri said. “We are studying the possibility of issuing new tenders just for their construction.”
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