Orascom Construction Industries (OCI) announced that a joint venture comprising of OCI, VINCI, and Arab Contractors has been awarded the civil works package worth US$ 300 million (EGP 1.8 billion) for the new barrage and 32 Megawatt (MW) hydropower plant in Assiut, Egypt. OCIís share of the contract is US$ 100 million (EGP 600 million).
The new barrage will be built 400 metres downstream of an existing barrage and includes a sluiceway with eight 17-meter-wide radial gates, a hydropower plant with four 8 MW turbine-generators, a double-chamber ship lock of 120- by 17-meter chamber size, a road bridge, an 11-meter-tall embankment dam, and rehabilitation or replacement of the Ibrahimia canal head regulator. A section of the Nile River will also be deepened in order to mitigate any potential increase in groundwater levels in Assiut city and neighboring areas.
The project was awarded by the Reservoirs and Grand Barrages Sector (RGBS) of the Egyptian Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation, and is partially funded by Germanyís Kreditanstalt fŁr Wiederaufbau (KfW), the government-owned development bank. The project is scheduled for completion in 2017.
The Assiut barrage and hydroelectric power plant is OCIís second project with the RGBS and KfW, with whom OCI and VINCI previously collaborated on the Naga Hammadi hydroelectric barrage in Egypt completed in 2008. This award builds on OCIís successful relationship with VINCI, with whom the company has partnered on several megaprojects in Egypt, including the Cairo Metro expansion. OCI is expanding the relationship to pursue several infrastructure opportunities in select African markets, further emphasizing OCIís leadership in the infrastructure and power sectors in the region.
OCI Construction Group Chief Operating Officer, Osama Bishai, commented, ďthe Assiut barrage and hydropower plant project is OCIís second hydroelectric project and third in renewable energy following the completion of the Kuraymat 62 MW Solar Combined Cycle Power Plant in Egypt earlier this year. OCIís growing track record in renewable energy cements our position as a leading regional player in this burgeoning sector. We are developing our clean energy competencies further and are currently pursuing the 1,000 MW Gulf of Suez wind farm which is being tendered by the Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company (EETC).Ē