Gently down the stream: finalizing plans for Egypt's first floating power plant
A floating power plant from Turkey. (Maritime-executive.com)
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Arab Energy is finalising all necessary approvals to supply the first floating 200MW power plant, with investments worth more than $180m. The plant will be located in an Egyptian port, to connect its production with the transport network and deliver energy to the company’s clients.
In a statement to Daily News Egypt, Arab Energy Chairman Khaled Abu Bakr said that final approvals from the authorities are underway. Stipulations to supply a floating power plant with a 200MW capacity are also being finalised.
He said that contracting for the purchase of a floating power plant is ongoing, whereby the plant will be supplied by an Asian company. The search for a port for the plant is ongoing in order to connect the plant with the national grid, Abu Bakr added.
He expected the plant to begin operating four months after contracts are signed and approved by different authorities.
The company will import fuel for the plant with the opening of the import market and the liberalisation of the fuel market, he added.
Abu Bakr emphasised that Arab Energy aims to use non-traditional ways to provide electricity to clients, and contribute to resolving the crisis of lack of energy produced from power plants operating in Egypt.
He noted that Egypt has suffered from an energy and fuel deficit and problems in their provision to the industrial sector for many years, which led to the halting of many factories.
Power plants are currently working on capacities ranging from 24%-28% as a result of the obsolescence of many units and their poor technical conditions, due to long periods between maintenance times.
There has been a crisis in the provision of fuel to power plants since 2013, due to the continuous decline of local natural gas production. It reached 4.46bn cubic feet per day, compared to 6.2bn cubic feet in 2011. However, the government is currently injecting fuel to plants on the account of the industrial sector in Egypt, according to Abu Bakr.
He added that this decline is a natural result of the decline of the fields’ production of gas, where it’s reduced by 120m cubic feet per month. Connecting compensatory wells are not enough to cover the reduction.
The Petroleum Ministry’s plan for natural gas production until 2020 proved that the decline of production will continue. The maximum production rate will reach 5bn cubic feet per day compared to an actual daily need of 7.5bn cubic feet, according to Abu Bakr.
By Nihal Mounir and Mohamed Adel
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