SEC’s latest loan takes the total raised from external project finance over the last 10 years to $39bn. Add in $11bn owed to the Saudi government and the total is $50bn. The firm’s increasing indebtedness casts a shadow over privatization plans.

State-led utility Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) is borrowing a further $2.6bn from eight international banks to help fund its electricity generating and supply capacity expansion, taking the total amount it has borrowed since 2007 to...