UAE - Emirates Water and Electricity Company (Ewec) has announced that it has received proposals from four major utility developers for the new Mirfa 2 reverse osmosis (RO) Independent Water Project coming up in Abu Dhabi.

These are Acciona and GS Inima (Spain) and Engie (France) in addition to Saudi-based Acwa Power, a leading developer of power generation and desalination projects in the region.

A leading company in the integrated coordination of planning, purchasing and supply of water and electricity across the UAE, Ewec said it had received more than 41 expressions of interest (EOIs) for the Mirfa 2 project last year.

Of this, 22 were qualified to bid for the project after submitting the statements of qualification.

According to Ewec, two proposals from each company were received, one for a capacity of 363,680 cu m/day, sufficient to meet the water demand for up to 140,000 households, and a second proposal for a capacity of up to 545,530 cu m/day).

The winning bidder will be responsible for developing, financing, constructing, operating, maintaining, and owning the standalone brownfield RO seawater desalination plant.

In addition to improving the water supply in Abu Dhabi, M2 will play an instrumental role in enhancing production efficiency and maixmising resilience, while also delivering a reduction in CO2 emissions, it added.

"Ewec is committed to continuing its strategic investment in developing low-carbon intensive water desalination facilities equipped with the latest sustainable RO technologies. The adoption of this technology provides significant efficiency benefits compared to traditional thermal desalination," remarked its CEO Othman Al Ali.

"Due to our well established and world leading project development model, we have moved through the submission process and conducted the necessary due diligence on the proposals. We are pleased to receive strong and competitive bids that align with Ewec’s vision to decarbonise the energy sector and decouple the emirate’s power and water generation capacity in-line with the UAE Net Zero by 2050 strategic initiative," he added.

Following the submissions, the proposals will undergo a detailed technical and commercial evaluation process to select the best proposal.

The awarding announcement and the execution of the Water Purchase Agreement is expected to take place by the end of this year. The expected date for starting commercial operations is Q2 2025.

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