Enemalta this afternoon defended its decision to award the contract for the power station extension to BWSC.

In a statement, it said three companies had competed for the tender– BWSC, Man Diesel and Bateman.

After careful consideration of the most important factors, namely technical compliance with the specification, emissions and the financial aspect, Enemalta chose the proposal submitted by BWSC.

On the financial aspect, BWSC quoted a total of €183 million (€165 million for the new extension with an additional €18million for a 5-year maintenance contract), Man Diesel quoted €218million (€189 million plus €29 million for the 5 year maintenance contract), whilst Bateman quoted €186 million (€149 million plus €37 million for the 5 year maintenance contract).

Furthermore the cost of electricity generation with the BWSC diesel engines was of €c12.467 per kWh, the cost proposed by Man Diesel would have been at €c13.696 per kWh whilst the cost of generating electricity using the Bateman gas turbines was projected to cost €c16.823 per kWh. It is clear that the chosen plant works out the cheapest.

With regards to CO2 emissions, those generated by diesel engines and those generated by the gas engines proposed by Bateman were similar.

CO2 emissions generated by diesel engines are 0.5894kg/kWh whilst CO2 emissions generated by gas engines are 0.5605kg/kWh, making the difference negligible.

"In view of all of the above, it is clear that Enemalta chose the most advantageous option, i.e. that of BWSC," the corporation said.

Enemalta said the evaluation process was carried out in full conformity with the evaluation criteria specified over two years earlier in the Request for Proposals (RfP) and the Invitation to Tender (ITT). These evaluation criteria had been previously approved by the Department of Contracts (DoC).

None of the bidders expressed any difficulty with the evaluation criteria at any stage during the tendering process, as they were entitled to do, both in terms of the EU Procurement directives and local legislation.

The evaluation was based on criteria intended to obtain a generating plant fully compliant with EU regulations, capable of operating on the fuels available locally and of being converted to gas whilst producing electricity at the lowest cost per kWh (when all costs including the initial capital cost, operations and maintenance, fuel and waste disposal were taken into account).

"This is why the BWSC proposal was chosen and not for any other reasons as has been repeatedly implied in the media," Enemalta said.

The BWSC contract is currently being evaluated by the Auditor-General.

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