Acciona submits bids for four Saudi Arabia desalination projects

The Spanish contractor has submitted bids for the Rabigh, Shuqaiq, Dammam, and Jeddah Airport facilities

Jesus Sancho is ranked on Construction Week's 2018 Power 100 list.
Jesus Sancho is ranked on Construction Week's 2018 Power 100 list.

Spanish contractor Acciona is bidding on four “huge”  water desalination and sewage treatment plants in Saudi Arabia, the company's managing director for the Middle East told Construction Week.

Jesús Sancho, Acciona's chief in the GCC, said the contractor had recently submitted bids for four projects in the kingdom that are being implemented under a public-private partnership (PPP) model.

“Saudi Arabia is launching huge desalination plants and sewage treatment plants in the PPP format,” he said, adding: “Acciona is very active in those [areas] and we have just bid for four of the largest PPP projects.”

READ: Acciona and Besix win $237m Dewa contract in Dubai

Acciona is bidding on sewage treatment plants and water desalination facilities that are located in Rabigh, Shuqaiq, Dammam, and Jeddah Airport. Sancho expects similar schemes in Yanbu, Taif, and Ras Al Khair, to become available in the near future too.

It is already working on a 210,000m³ seawater reverse osmosis desalination plant in Al Khobar that is one of the largest in the kingdom to use reverse osmosis technology. The project will become one of the largest desalination plants in the country when it is built.

“In the rest of the GCC, particularly the UAE, there will be some large desalination plants coming up from Dewa [Dubai Electricity and Water Authority], from the Department of Energy in Abu Dhabi, and some more in the northern parts of the country,” Sancho said.

READ: The future of sustainable construction in the Middle East

Building desalination plants is one of Acciona's core competencies and the business claims to have purified, processed, and desalinated water for more than 100 million people worldwide. Since entering the Middle East in 2008, the company has started to bring its expertise in this area to the region by working on a raft of government-supported projects in the region.

Sancho, who features on Construction Week's Power 100 list of the most influential people in the Middle East's construction sector, said the company was also bidding for work on Taweela SWRO in Abu Dhabi, which will become the largest desalination plant in the world upon completion. The facility will help to provide sustainable water supply to the emirate and significantly increase the UAE's capacity to desalinate water.

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