The latest GE technology with its diverse solutions is contributing toward driving energy efficiency across Saudi Arabia, according to a top company executive.
“In fact, as a long-term partner of the Kingdom, having provided the first gas turbine for the first power plant, we are committed to innovating new technologies that specifically meet Saudi Arabia's real needs," Mohammed S. Mohaisen, regional general manager of thermal products and power generations services sales Middle East for GE Power & Water, told Arab News on the sidelines of the Saudi Water & Power Forum (SWPF) at the Jeddah Hilton yesterday.
Saudi Electricity Co. (SEC) is the largest single customer for General Electric (GE) globally, and the US industrial giant is always keen to deliver and transfer its latest and best technology to Saudi Arabia to support its needs.
GE with its long presence in Saudi Arabia is providing more than 50 percent of the total power generation to the Kingdom, a feat made possible by its employees, which also reflects the company’s efforts to continue to invest in technology and human capital alongside the process of localization.
GE is featuring its Heavy Fuel Oil (HFO) combined cycle plant and FlexEfficiency 60 Portfolio that promotes energy efficiency, complementing Saudi Arabia's sustainable energy management initiatives at the show.
To meet the growing demand for power to support the needs of the population and to drive infrastructure development, Saudi Arabia is investing in strengthening its energy sector with a focus on sustainability. "By introducing the HFO combined cycle technology and the FlexEfficiency 60 Portfolio, GE is reiterating its focus on further strengthening operational efficiencies in line with the long-term vision of the government," he said.
Mohaisen said GE kept evaluating the installed capacity and was looking at different solutions to improve the efficiency of existing capacity in the Kingdom.
With over 80 years of presence in the Kingdom, more than 500 GE turbines currently generate over 50 percent of the Kingdom’s electricity, and the company's advanced technology supports the production of 150 million liters clean water daily, delivered to the country's remotest corners, he said.
"We are addressing as well to make Saudi Arabia GE's hub for repair and maintenance for the gas turbines to serve not only the Kingdom, but also the rest of the Middle East and Europe," he added.
Developed specially for the region taking into account local requirements and specifications, the HFO combined cycle technology is envisaged to considerably enhance efficiencies in the use of heavy fuel oil and conversion for power generation, and is in line with the Kingdom's policy to progressively shift power generation to heavy fuel oil.
By 2020, the Kingdom targets the generation of over 23 GW of power through heavy fuel oil projects that are planned to ensure highly efficient and reliable power generation, environmental responsibility and reduction in overall costs.
"As the Kingdom works toward raising its power production to nearly 80 GW by 2020 and diversify its energy mix through a focus on sustainable sources, GE will support the initiatives through its advanced technologies," Mohaisen said. "We are also investing in localized manufacturing, and to strengthen the technical skill sets of the Saudi professionals, which is important in ensuring the sustainable growth of the energy and water sector in the Kingdom."
He added: “The Saudi Water & Power Forum brings diverse stakeholders on one platform, and presents us the opportunity to interact and engage with industry leaders and underline our message of promoting energy efficiency and sustainable growth."
Mohaisen said GE was also presenting its Zee Weed water solutions technology at the forum, which is certified to ecomagination — GE's commitment to imagine and build innovative solutions to today's environmental challenges while driving economic growth.
As part of its commitment to the Kingdom, GE is also training Saudi professionals through an agreement with the Technical & Vocational Training Corporation (TVTC).
Additionally, the company will put the spotlight on the newly expanded GE Manufacturing Technology Center (GEMTEC) in Dammam, which now has five key components that support domestic manufacturing, servicing and training — goals that are aligned with the Saudi Vision 2020, said Mohaisen.
Mazin Ali Albahkali, general manger, power generation, Saudi Arabia of GE Energy, also attended the press conference.