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Inter RAO Looks to Jordan Oil Shale for Mideast Growth

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates — Inter RAO is considering possible involvement in the construction of a $250 million complex for processing oil shale in Jordan, the company's chief executive Boris Kovalchuk said at the opening ceremony of a Middle East representative office Monday.

He said Inter RAO would set up a joint venture with an investor from Saudi Arabia with the sides getting 33 percent and 67 percent, respectively.

He said the complex would include a power plant with the capacity of 90 to 150 megawatts.

Kovalchuk said the electricity from the plant would be sold to the Jordanian state company NEPCO and the synthetic oil to the state oil refining company ZAPKA.

The partners are expected to make a feasibility study of the project by the end of the year. Geological prospecting in the field is ongoing.

Kovalchuk said the field extends to Israel and his company plans to hold talks with Israel on its possible involvement in the project.

Speaking of other Inter RAO power engineering projects in the Middle East, he said a venture is being set up with the government of Yemen to upgrade and operate the Al Hiswah thermal power plant in that country. Investment in the project is estimated at $100 million.

One more project in the Middle East is the construction of the Al Kamsha wind farm. The energy from it will be sold at a fixed price to NEPCO. The project is estimated to cost $105 million.

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