Finnish company Wartsila has won a €128m ($165m) turnkey contract to construct, supply and engineer a power plant in Mauritania for state utility Société Mauritanienne d’Electricité (Somelec).

The plant will be powered by a total of eight Wartsila 50DF dual-fuel generating sets, which are able to run on both natural gas and conventional heavy and light fuel oil.

The intention is to operate the power plant on natural gas from the Banda offshore oilfield, some 80 km off the Mauritania coast. This supply is scheduled to be available in 2015.

Wartsila today described the plant as “the most important dual fuel power project being undertaken in West Africa”. Its electricity will be fed to the national grid and will also be used to provide energy for the country’s growing mining industry.

All construction work is estimated to be completed within 24 months and Wartsila is also negotiating a long term operations and maintenance contract.