Top global utility firms in race for Saudi Arabia's Rabigh-4 water project

Successful bidder will develop the project and sell the entire capacity and output to SWPC

  
Image used for illustrative purpose. A worker stands at a desalination plant, 35 lm south of Riyadh, May 4, 2011.

Image used for illustrative purpose. A worker stands at a desalination plant, 35 lm south of Riyadh, May 4, 2011.

REUTERS/Fahad Shadeed

Saudi Water Partnerships Company (SWPC) has announced that it has received bids from 39 utility project developer consortiums, including 21 local firms, for the Rabigh-4 Independent Water Project, which on completion, will boast a potable water capacity of 600,000 cu m/day.
 
The project, to be designed using reverse osmosis (RO) seawater desalination technology, will be located in Rabigh, 180 km northwest of Makkah, on the Red Sea coast in the kingdom's western province. It will include the desalination plant and all associated infrastructure and facilities.
 
Among the top global industry players who have expressed their interests in the project are Spanish industrial majors GS Inima Environment, Acciona Agua, and Cobra; French utility expert Veolia and Italian group Fisia Italimpianti in addition to Hydro Industries (UK); Aquatech International (US); Marubeni (Japan); J&P (Cyprus) and VA Tech Wabag (India), said a statement from SWPC.
 
Of these EoIs, 21 are from Saudi companies including regional utility giant Acwa Power, Al Bawani Water & Power as well as Marafiq, Sajco, Alfanar, Nesma, AlKawther Industries, Mowah, Haaco and National Water Works.
 
Also some GCC players such as Metito Utilities and Utico (UAE); Elsewedy (Egypt) and Bahrain-based Lamar Holding are in the race, it added.
 
According to SWPC, a private sector developer/developer consortium will be selected for the project following a competitive tender process which will be responsible for its development, financing, procurement, implementation and operation and maintenance.
 
The successful bidder, through a special purpose vehicle, will develop the project and sell the entire capacity and output to SWPC under a 25-year concession pursuant to a Water Purchase Agreement.
 
The utility’s obligations under the WPA will be supported by a credit support agreement from the government of Saudi Arabia.
 
For the Rabigh-4 IWP, SWPC’s professional advisors are KPMG Professional Services (lead and financial advisor); Eversheds Sutherland (International) as legal advisor and WSP as technical advisor.-TradeArabia News Service

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