Consortium wins $20.4bn nuclear contract in UAE

28 December 2009– A South Korean consortium has won a $20.4 billion contract to develop a civilian nuclear program for the United Arab Emirates. The consortium includes Korea Electric Power Corp., Hyundai Engineering and Construction, Samsung and Doosan Heavy Industries.

A second consortium included companies like Areva, Total and GDF Suez and was considered the frontrunner. A third consortium was made up of U.S. and Japanese companies including General Electric and Hitachi.

The contract includes the design and construction of four 1,400 MW nuclear power units as well as assistance with their operations. The UAE hopes the first nuclear unit will begin producing electricity by 2017 and the remaining three by 2020.

Other Middle Eastern states are making plans to develop civilian nuclear plants in response to meeting future power demands. UAE officials estimated that national annual peak demand is likely to rise by more than 40,000 MW by 2020.