Schneider, Saudi firm tie-up to spur electricity sector
Riyadh, May 11, 2014
Schneider Electric, a global specialist in energy management, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with National Grid Saudi Arabia to cooperate in developing and advancing electricity infrastructure in the kingdom.
NGSA is the entity solely responsible for the transmission of electricity in Saudi Arabia.
The three-year agreement, inked between Fréderic Abbal, executive vice president, Energy Business of Schneider Electric and Mohammed S Al-Rafaa, vice president, engineering of National Grid SA, in Paris, will facilitate the exchange of knowledge, experience, best practices and technology between the two organisations through periodic technical forums hosted interchangeably at their premises, said a statement.
The companies will also collaborate as partners for decision making on standards and specifications, engineering and design, and maintenance and operation.
Additionally, Schneider Electric will provide Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) and National Grid SA with training on mutually agreed focus areas, particularly environmental issues and regulations impacting the industry.
The MoU comes at a time when Saudi Arabia is witnessing huge investments in the power transmission and distribution sector. According to Business Monitor International (BMI), the $80bn (excluding nuclear power) 10-year investment plan for electricity infrastructure 2008-2018 is driving significant activity in the energy sector. BMI also predicts an additional 30 gigawatts (GW) to be added to the current estimated capacity of 51.6 gigawatts (GW) by 2020.
Abbal said: “We have an excellent relationship with SEC/National Grid SA that has been further strengthened by this important MoU. As part of this agreement, we will work towards developing standards and specifications that are specially tailored for the Saudi Arabia market. We will collaborate with Saudi National Electro-technical Committee (SNEC) in the fields of protection, substation design and automation, smart grid, maintenance and asset management.
“We are working to evolve standardisation in engineering and design of equipment according to the specifications and requirements of SEC/National Grid SA. Schneider Electric will provide training and advanced certification programmes to engineers at National Grid. We are confident this empowerment of the employees will complement our efforts to advance the nation’s electricity infrastructure.”
During the three-year duration of the MoU, Schneider Electric will step-up its efforts to further recruit Saudi engineers in all necessary fields. The company will also utilise its internationally renowned expertise in design, installation and maintenance, in addition to leveraging its training experience towards the successful implementation of this agreement.
Al-Rafaa said: “We believe the MoU will reiterate nationalisation and localisation of our resources in this key industry that is poised for tremendous growth in Saudi Arabia. Schneider Electric will help us bring global expertise with a local perspective to the field and enhance our existing knowledge and technical knowledge.” – TradeArabia News Service