A consortium featuring MAN Diesel & Turbo and Burmeister & Wain Scandinavian Contractor (BWSC) has won a contract to build a 127 MW gas-fired power plant in Benin.

The Maria Gleta plant, which will be located near the major port city of Cotonou, will use seven of MAN’s 51/60 DF gas gensets, which will be delivered this year.

The plant is planned to run on natural gas as soon as a supply is available, MAN said, but will run on heavy fuel oil in the meantime.

MAN’s service business PrimeServ will supply spare parts and support of major maintenance under a long-term service agreement with BWSC, which will operate the plant.

Operation is scheduled to begin in the first half of 2019 and expansion to a total capacity of 400 MW is planned for the future.

The project is part of Benin’s scheme titled ‘Revealing Benin’, which centres around 45 flagship projects aimed at strengthening macroeconomic development, consolidating democracy and improving the living environment for the country’s citizens.  

Waldemar Wiesner, Head of Region MEA for MAN’s power plants business, said the plant’s fuel flexibility was “essential to ensure the immediate production of electrical energy, once the construction has been finalized.

“To date, only 30 per cent of the people of Benin have access to electricity, which is why the project is of great importance to increase national prosperity and to support the country’s growing economy,” he added.