The Ministry of Electricity and Water in Kuwait will sign a KD 3.595 million contract with a security company to guard power transformers around the country. This will allow the Ministry to protect its facilities where multiple thefts occurred and resulted in frequent blackouts and significant financial losses.
The Interior Ministry rejected an earlier proposal to secure transformers claiming they cannot provide around 2,500 police officers required for the task.
It has been reported that 600 main and secondary transformers in addition to 150 water wells were subjected to theft between 2007 and 2013 by 'organised gangs'. The Ministry of Electricity and Water spends KD 15 million each year to repair the damage caused by thiefs. Earlier reports indicated that at least 60 cable thefts resulted in blackouts this year that marred an otherwise 'successful campaign' in which the Ministry upgraded power supply to cope with the growing power demand. Kuwait improved the total daily power production to 14,000 MW this year.
Annual maintenance of power plants, transformers and distribution networks helped the Ministry cope with the yearly increase in power demand, mainly caused by lengthy usage of air conditioning units. However, senior ministry officials repeatedly stress that a new power plant is necessary to avoid shortage crises in the future.
There are seven fossil-fuel power plants in Kuwait that produce electricity and desalinated water for a total population of 3.8 million on a daily basis, with a new power plant in North Zoor starting to operate by 2015.