GCC utilities project awards seen at $32b in 2013

JEDDAH — The GCC utilities contract awards were forecast to reach $32.4 billion in 2013, a new report by Ventures Middle East, released ahead of Dubai’s Middle East Electricity event scheduled for Feb. 17- 19, 2013, said.

It forecast power and water spending is said to be “back on track” as annual electricity demand growth across the GCC averages between 10 and 15 percent.

“The GCC region will require an additional 60 gigawatts of power capacity by 2015, and the coming years are likely to witness a substantial improvement in the development of regional utility infrastructure,” said Anita Mathews, Middle East Electricity exhibition director.

The report found that the bulk of power and water spending will be in Saudi Arabia where $17 billion worth of new contracts will be signed. Kuwait and the UAE are forecast to reach deals worth $4.2 billion over the same period.

Qatar is predicted to sign $3.2 billion of new deals, Oman $2.7 billion and Bahrain closes out the figures with $1.1 billion in new power and water spending.

After a lull in 2011 amid uncertain economic conditions and political apprehensions across the wider MENA region, the power and water sector is back on track, as GCC annual electricity demand grows from 10-15 percent annually and regional governments scramble to catch up, it said.

With power demand in the region set to triple over the next 25 years, infrastructure developments backed by governments and public private partnerships (PPPs) are surging ahead, the research added.

More than 1,000 exhibitors from 58 countries involved in the power, lighting, renewable and nuclear sectors are expected to attend the three-day Middle East Electricity event.

“Rapidly increasing population and expanding commercial, industrial, and residential sectors will ensure that regional demand for electricity and water will continue unabated,” Mathews added.

The Saudi Gazette 2012, Dec 11 2012