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    Siemens Wins Big Libyan Order


Siemens has signed contracts with state-owned General Electricity Company of Libya (Gecol) to boost power generation capacity there.

by: Mark Smedley

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Natural Gas & LNG News, Africa, Gas to Power, Political, Ministries, News By Country, Germany, Libya

Siemens Wins Big Libyan Order

Siemens said December 11 it has signed contracts with state-owned utility General Electricity Company of Libya (Gecol) to boost power generation capacity in Libya by some 1.3 gigawatts. 

It will build a 650-MW open-cycle power plant in Misrata, equipped with two F-class gas turbines, and a 690-MW open-cycle power plant in Tripoli West, equipped with four E‑class gas turbines (one is shown above, photo courtesy of Siemens). The engineering procurement and construction (EPC) contracts, including long-term service agreements, are worth roughly €700mn ($825mn).

Asked by NGW if the fuel would be natural gas for both power plants, the German turbine-maker said that Tripoli West will be operated solely on fuel oil for now, while Misrata would operate on "fuel gas", but that both simple-cycle power plants are capable of operating on either gas or oil, and that Tripoli West will be switched to gas in the near future.

Libya used to have enough associated gas for its power needs. Since 2011 it had turned to diesel and fuel oil as oilfields, producing associated gas, were shut by civil war; several though have now reopened.

“Libya needs a reliable and affordable power supply to set the stage for a prosperous and promising future for the Libyan people,” said Siemens CEO Joe Kaeser: “As a trusted partner, Siemens will provide Libya with innovative and sustainable infrastructure solutions that are essential for the economic development of the country and its people."

“Around 30% of Libya’s installed power generation capacity is based on Siemens technology that delivers electricity for 2mn people,” said Willi Meixner, Siemens Power and Gas Division CEO: “After completion, the power plants in Misrata and Tripoli West will help the country to solve the ongoing challenges caused by frequent and unpredictable power cuts." Siemens says it has supported Libya with technology and expertise since the 1950s. Two years ago it signed a massive €8bn contract with neighbouring Egypt, now well on course to fulfilment.

Last month Algerian state utility Sonelgaz, which generates most of its power from gas, said it held talks with Gecol about possible electricity exports to Libya this winter to cover the latter's supply shortfall.

Finnish smaller turbine maker Wartsila separately announced December 11 it had been awarded a seven-year contract by Termo Mechero Morro to operate and maintain the latter's gas-powered El Morro power plant near Yopal in Colombia; no contract value was disclosed. The unit will be a baseload power plant equipped with six Wartsila 34SG gas engines for an installed capacity of 55 MW.