July 17 (Renewables Now) - Italian oil and gas group Saipem SpA (BIT:SPM) and renewables investor Plambeck Emirates LLC have tied up to develop what will be Saudi Arabia’s first floating offshore wind farm -- a 500-MW complex in the Persian Gulf.
The parties have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the project as well as an exclusive agreement for the development and construction of the wind park, Saipem said on Wednesday. The Italian firm will also serve as the engineering, procurement, construction and installation (EPCI) contractor.
The project will be implemented in line with Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 plan and as part of a 5-GW wind market concept proposed for Saudi Arabia. "We believe that the wind market in Saudi Arabia can be supported by innovative solutions for the construction of offshore wind farms, such as the Saipem technology Hexafloat [..],” said Francesco Balestrino, renewables and green tech product manager of the Xsight division.
The next steps in the early stage project development will begin in the coming weeks through Plambeck Saudi, a unit of Abu Dhabi-based Plambeck Emirates.
Saipem’s EPCI assignment role is subject to the finalisation of financial agreements at the end of the planning phase, after which the EPCI contract will be signed. A wind turbine supplier for the project is expected to be picked at a later point.