Dubai: Egypt and Saudi Arabia have signed contracts for an inter-connected power grid, with work expected to begin next year.
The $1.8 billion grid project will have a peak load of 3,000 megawatts. Contracts were signed with three international and local alliances to implement a high-voltage, direct current (HDVC) electric power transmission system. The 500 kilovolts HVDC project consists of three high-voltage converter stations - two in Saudi Arabia, where a power station will be set up in Media and another in Tabuk, and the third one being the Badr power station, east of Cairo.
The three stations will be connected via overhead electric power transmission lines stretching across 1,350 meters and 22 kilometers of sea cables in the Gulf of Aqaba. The project comes nine years after Egypt and Saudi Arabia signed a cooperation agreement to establish the power linkage grid.
The project will be financed by the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development, Arab Fund for Economic Development and the Islamic Development Bank, and supported by the self-resources of the Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company.
Prince Abdul Aziz bin Salman, Saudi Energy Minister, said the electrical interconnection between Egypt and Saudi Arabia is a step for joint Arab action that will pave the way for greater cooperation with other countries in the world later.