Nexans wins a 171 million USD order to supply extra-high-voltage submarine link between Saudi Arabia and Bahrain

Paris, November 21, 2005 - Nexans announced today that it has won an order from GCCIA (Gulf Countries Council Interconnection Authority) amounting to over 171  million USD for the manufacture, transportation and installation of a dedicated extra-high-voltage link to interconnect the power grids of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Bahrain. This project, worth 343 million USD overall, is one of the largest ever undertaken in the world. Due to its size, it required the creation of a 50/50 consortium between Nexans and Prysmian Cavi e Sistemi of Italy.

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For this project, Nexans will supply one extra-high-voltage cable circuit comprising a total of 120km of 400kV single core SCFF (Self Contained Fluid Filled) submarine cables, 24km of 400kV single core SCFF underground cables and 47 km of fibre optic cable (48 fibres) as well as connection accessories (joints and terminations, oil pressurizing system and temperature monitoring systems). These links will run from Al Jasra (Bahrain) to Ras Al Qurrayah (Saudi Arabia) via Umm An Na’ san Island. The submarine sections will be 40km long and the underground sections 7km long. The overall weight of the cables to be delivered for this project will be over 12 000 tonnes.

Interconnecting the Gulf power grids
The project to interconnect the power transmission grids of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Bahrain is part of a larger-scale project, the GCC Interconnection Grid. It will interconnect most of the major Gulf countries (Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Oman) and eventually have the capability to transport 1200 MVA (by High Voltage Alternate Current transmission).

Nexans’ expertise supports large-scale projects
The extra-high-voltage submarine power cables will be manufactured by the specialised Nexans plant in Halden (Norway).
These cables are scheduled for installation of the underground part to start in 2007 with the submarine sections following in 2008/2009. Installation will be carried out by Nexans engineers and technicians employing specialised equipment and vessels. Because of the shallow water in the area, a special cable-laying barge will be used.
The project is expected to be commissioned in early 2010.
In order to protect the cables from potential external damages, they will be buried all along their way.
Nexans has gained strong experience in this kind of submarine links for more than one hundred years, including such prestigious projects as Spain to Marocco, Moyle and Ormen Lange.

With this project, Nexans demonstrates once again its capability to meet the specific requirements of very large projects in the field of electric power infrastructure. This is also an opportunity for the Group to strengthen its performance in the power business, as well as highlight our increasing presence on fast-growing markets, such as Gulf countries,” said Patrick Barth, Managing Director of Nexans’ High Voltage activity.

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Nexans is the worldwide leader in the cable industry. The Group brings an extensive range of advanced copper and optical fiber cable solutions to the infrastructure, industry and building markets. Nexans cables and cabling systems can be found in every area of people's lives, from telecommunications and energy networks, to aeronautics, aerospace, automobile, railways, building, petrochemical, medical applications, etc. With an industrial presence in 29 countries and commercial activities throughout the world, Nexans employs 20,000 people and had sales in 2004 of 4.8 billion euros. Nexans is listed on the Paris stock exchange. More information available on www.nexans.com