RIYADH: Saudi Arabia and Egypt on Monday signed contracts for a $1.8 billion electricity interconnection project.
The project, to begin in 2022, will ensure an exchange of 3,000 MW of electricity between the two countries.
“Saudi Arabia and Egypt share the same goals, and we work together as a team to implement them,” said Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman, who oversaw the signing ceremony.
“The electrical interconnection will enable us to move to greater horizons, which is global connectivity with other countries in Europe and elsewhere,” he said.
The Saudi minister said the project is consistent with the development programs envisaged in the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 program.
Egyptian Electricity Minister Mohamed Shaker said: “The project is a corridor for the transit of electricity to reach the continent of Asia.”
The Egyptian side will bear 40-45 percent of the project value, and part of the funding will come through Arab institutions.
In a statement, the Saudi Electricity Co. said that the project included contracts with three alliances of international and local firms.
The project will have a peak load of 3,000 MW with a 500 kV high-voltage direct current technology, consisting of three high-voltage power stations in East Madinah and Tabuk in Saudi Arabia, and one in Badr, East Cairo, Egypt.
The utility provider said that the three stations will be connected by overhead transmission lines, stretching nearly 1,350 km and 22 km sea cables in the Gulf of Aqaba.
Egypt and Saudi Arabia signed a cooperation agreement in 2012 to establish the electrical interconnection project.
The project will be the main axis in the Arab electrical linkage, which aims to create an infrastructure for electricity trade between Arab countries.