Abu Dhabi-headquartered district cooling company Tabreed announced on Tuesday it has struck a strategic alliance with India’s Tata Realty and Infrastructure Limited (TRIL), marking its first district cooling transaction in the world’s fifth largest economy.

The deal includes an investment of 44.34 million UAE dirhams in TATA Realty’s Intellion Park special economic zone (SEZ) development, located in Gurugram in India’s Haryana state, the company said in a press statement.

Tabreed will acquire the existing cooling infrastructure at Intellion Park, which spans an area of 3.5 million square feet, and develop additional capacity to meet the development’s rising demand for cooling services.

Tabreed said its alliance with Tata Realty will serve as a launch pad for Cooling as a Service (CaaS) market in India, where the prevalent practice is for real estate developers to incur capex on building their own cooling assets and outsource operations through facility management contracts.

Khaled Abdulla Al Qubaisi, Chairman of Tabreed, said India will be a key strategic market and important partner for the company as it expands its international presence.

“We expect to see large-scale adoption of District Cooling in India as demand for real estate and cooling grows at a rapid pace. Tabreed is delighted to partner with Tata Realty to develop leading, innovative District Cooling services, which will support sustainable urban development across India. This will unlock value for our stakeholders, while benefitting communities and reducing carbon emissions.”

India’s Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change forecasts that aggregated cooling demand will rise eightfold by 2037-38, with cooling expected to account for 45 percent of peak energy demand across the country by 2050. In 2019, the ministry established the India Cooling Action Plan (ICAP) to support the growth of a sustainable District Cooling sector across the country.

(Writing by SA Kader; Editing by Anoop Menon)