KSA group bids to build power plant in Telangana
A Saudi-American-Chinese consortium has proposed to build a coal-fired power plant in the newly created Indian state of Telangana.
The consortium is led by Faiz Al-Abideen, a prominent Saudi businessman and adviser to members of the royal family.
Al-Abideen presented a letter of commitment to Telangana Deputy Chief Minister Mohammed Mahmood Ali in Jeddah on Thursday. Ali recently performed Haj and has in a previous interview with Arab News sought investment from Saudi Arabia for his fledgling state.
Al-Abideen said the proposed power plant would cost between $3 billion (SR11 billion) and $4.5 billion (SR16 billion).
“It will generate between 2,500 and 3,500 megawatts and utilize coal that is said to be found in abundance in the state’s Khammam district,” he told Arab News.
Al-Abideen said his group has built 17 power plants in Saudi Arabia and abroad, including Turkey.
“We have huge experience in power plants and will wait for the response from the Telangana government.”
Mahmood Ali welcomed the proposal. “I came here little knowing that I will go back with this concrete proposal from Saudi Arabia,” he said at a luncheon meeting organized by Indian community representative Syed Rafath Shah.
“I will discuss the proposal with Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao. We will have to discuss its feasibility with the Environment Ministry and other relevant government departments.”
He said his government’s top priority is to attract foreign direct investment from abroad, especially Saudi Arabia because the Kingdom has had long-standing ties with the state’s capital Hyderabad.
“We want to revive the golden era that existed in the past,” he said in the presence of key Indian community members including Syed Ali Mahmood, Aijaz Ahmad Khan, Shamim Kausar, Syed Jamal Qadri, Mirza Qudrat Nawaz Baig, Ahmed Abdul Hakeem, Aleem Khan Falaki, Mohammed Jabbar and Nadim Abdul Basith.
The deputy chief minister thanked Al-Abideen for committing to invest in Telangana.
“We will see to it that your consortium and our state grow in tandem.”
The new state is facing a severe power crunch. The project could generate many jobs for the state’s unemployed youth, he said.
“It is our government’s plan to create a single-window clearance for foreign investors,” said the deputy chief minister.
“We want to facilitate the entry of foreign investors and assure them their investment will be fully protected.”
He said his government is in the process of creating special economic zones to attract foreign direct investment, especially from Saudi Arabia.
“India is a rising power and the whole world is looking at us with awe,” he said. “Now is the time for Saudis to come in, and invest in many sectors.”
He said Saudis can invest in infrastructure development, education, health and information technology.
“They can come and build hospitals and colleges, and set up service centers for their industries,” he said.
“We are a new state with good infrastructure. We are rich in minerals. Hyderabad is an IT hub, it has an international airport, and we are in the process of setting up two more international airports.”