SWPC and partners breaks ground on $826m desalination plant in Saudi Arabia

On completion the IWP will supply potable water to Makkah and Madinah

The Saudi Water Partnerships Company (SWPC) has announced the ground-breaking of the $826m Al Rayyis Independent Water Project, which is being developed in collaboration with Engie and Saudi groups Nesma and Mowah. The 450,000cu/m capacity desalination plant is expected to begin commercial operations in Q4 2023.

According to SWPC, the project is the first water pipeline in Saudi Arabia developed under the public-private-partnership (PPP) structure and will achieve one of the most competitive specific power consumption levels in the kingdom. On completion, the RO plant will supply potable water to the cities of Makkah and Madinah.

As per the terms of the deal, SWPC will develop and finance the desalination plant, which will be operated and maintained by Engie in Saudi Arabia. The project features solar energy units generating 20MW of power to reduce grid electricity consumption throughout the desalination process, as well as water storage tanks designed to maintain a capacity of two operational days.

As per the deal, the Engie consortium will develop the project on a BOO (build, own and operate) model with a concession term of 25 years.

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