The Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) has signed a 30-year water purchase agreement with Saudi Arabia’s ACWA Power for the first phase of its seawater reverse osmosis plant at Hassyan.

The two entities also signed a shareholder agreement for the facility that will be powered by solar energy and have a capacity of 180 million imperial gallons per day (MIGD) .

ACWA Power has been chosen as the preferred bidder to develop and operate the first phase of the plant after submitting a bid to invest AED3.357 billion ($914 million) in the project, which is expected to increase the Dubai utility’s water desalination capacity to 730 MIGD by 2030, from 490 MIGD at present.

The largest of its kind in the world, the project is DEWA’s first project to be developed under the independent water producer (IWP) model. It will occupy an area of 252,300 square metres.

“The Hassyan IWP will be the largest plant of its kind in the world, and we have set a new record for the lowest levelized water tariff,” said Mohammad Abunayyan, Founder and Chairman of ACWA Power.

“The plant will be highly efficient, desalinating water through reverse osmosis powered by solar energy.”

(Writing by Cleofe Maceda; editing by Seban Scaria)