ECRA: Power generation and transmission projects need SR526bn

Updated 11 July 2014
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ECRA: Power generation and transmission projects need SR526bn

A whopping sum of SR 526 billion is needed for the implementation of power generation, transmission and distribution projects, local media said quoting a report released by the Electricity and Cogeneration Regulatory Authority (ECRA).
Based on a study on the estimated cost of electricity services during 1430-1441H, power generation will cost SR335 billion, or 63.7 percent of the overall costs, transmission SR121 billion (23 percent) and distribution SR70 billion (13.3 percent), the report said.
According to the estimates, the maximum power load will reach 71.940 GW by the year 1441 whereas the generating reserve will hit 15 percent, the report said.
In the fiscal year 1434-1435, a number of contracts were signed for the implementation of electric projects costing nearly SR 46 billion of which SR14.8 billion was allocated for generation projects, SR22.5 billion for transmission and SR8.5 billion for distribution projects, Al-Eqtisadiah daily said.
The volume of works and investments needed for electricity industry up to 1441 represents attractive opportunities to the private sector, according to the ECRA report.
The private sector companies could avail opportunities to implement independent projects for power generation, water desalination, construction, operation or lease of power transmission lines, management of current facilities, or provision of services to customers, the report added.
The report said ECRA pursues to select the best options in a manner to serve the interests of the Kingdom in coordination with the Ministry of Water and Electricity, the Saudi Electricity Company (SEC), Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC) and other investors relevant to this area.


US tariffs trigger WTO spat escalation

Updated 27 min 39 sec ago
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US tariffs trigger WTO spat escalation

GENEVA: China, Russia and the European Union are among a string of countries asking the World Trade Organization to probe new US steel and aluminum tariffs, the world trade body said Friday.
Washington is meanwhile calling the WTO to investigate a number of retaliatory duties imposed by a range of countries, the agenda for the next meeting of the organization’s Dispute Settlement Body (DSB) showed.
The agenda for the DSB meeting set to be held on October 29 shows that the EU, China, Russia, Canada, Mexico, Norway and Turkey plan to ask for the creation of a panel of experts to review US President Donald Trump’s decision to hit them with tariffs of 25 percent on steel and 10 percent on aluminum.
Marking a departure from a decades-long US-led drive for free trade, Trump has justified the steep tariffs with claims that massive flows of imports to the United States threaten national security.
The tariff spat has escalated into an all-out trade war between the US and China and growing trade tensions between Washington and many of its traditional allies.
The US is meanwhile planning to request that the DSB create another set of expert panels to review the legality of retaliatory tariffs imposed by China, Canada, the EU and Mexico.
The requests, which follow rounds of failed consultations, mark and escalation in an ongoing showdown at the WTO around Trump’s controversial trade policies.
Under WTO regulations, parties in a dispute can block a first request for the creation of an arbitration panel, but if the parties make a second request, it is all but guaranteed to go through.
“Once the panel is established and composed, the EU is ready to demonstrate that the United States’ import duties are WTO-inconsistent and to obtain a ruling that condemns the US and brings relief to the EU industry,” an EU Commission spokesperson said.
The creation of a DSB panel usually triggers a long and often costly legal battle that sometimes takes years to resolve.