Saudi Water Partnership Company (SWPC) – formerly the Water and Electricity Company – which has been charged with responsibility for overseeing public-private partnerships (PPPs) in the desalination and wastewater sector, has been spearheading a number of projects in the waste water sector.
According to a recent KPMG report entitled Success Factors for Public-Private Partnerships in the Water Sector, based on transaction values of projects tendered by 2020, SWPC is expected to facilitate around $7 billion (SR26 billion) of planned investment into projects that are slated for tendering in line with the Saudi Vision 2030.
The current and forecasted sewage network covers about 50 per cent of the total wastewater generated. Under the Saudi Vision 2030, 95-100 per cent coverage would be required by over the next decade, the report said. The kingdom had around 5.6 million cu m/day of wastewater treatment capacity as of 2018 with 3.2 million cu m/day under construction and 0.4 million cu m/day planned for decommissioning. A total of 8.4 million cu m/day of capacity addition is required by 2023 to achieve the treatment targets.
SWPC currently has three sewage treatment plants (STPs) under construction at Jeddah Airport 2, Dammam and Taif and four projects under procurement including the Jazan Cluster, Madinah 3, Tabuk 2 and Buraidah 2.
Early last month, SWPC issued a Request for Qualification (RFQ) for the development of the Jazan small sewage treatment plants (SSTP) with a 104,500 cu m per day capacity. The Jazan Cluster comprises 17 small plants with sizes ranging from 1,000 cu m/day to 15,000 cu m/day, together with associated collection networks of 1,500 km (with lengths ranging from 7 km to 415 km). According to SWPC, a total of 46 companies, including 27 Saudi firms, as part of 38 consortia, have expressed their interest in the Jazan SSTP project.
Other plants in the procurement stage are the Buraydah 2 ISTP, located in the Qassim region, approximately 400 km from Riyadh, which will have a total treatment capacity of 150,000 cu m/day; Tabuk 2 ISTP located in north-western Saudi Arabia, which will have a total treatment capacity of 90,000 cu m/day; and the Madinah 3 ISTP which will have a total treatment capacity of 375,000 cu m/day.
A further 12 projects have been planned for the future. These comprise Al-Haer, Khamis Mushayit, Riyadh East, Abu Arish 3, South Najran, North Jeddah, and the Western, Eastern, Central, Southern Cluster, North-western and Northern Clusters
The kingdom’s first independent sewage treatment plant (ISTP) is being set up at an investment of $245 million at Dammam West. SWPC joined hands with a consortium led by the Metito, a leading provider of total intelligent water management solutions, to reach the financial closure of the plant. The consortium comprises key partners Saudi-based Mowah and Egypt’s Orascom Construction. Its scope of work covers the entire investment and includes the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) and operation and maintenance (O&M), which will be executed by Dammam West Company for Water, a wholly-owned Saudi-based company established by the consortium to serve the project.
The Dammam ISTP, which has a designed capacity of 350,000 cu m per day will serve the western region of Dammam. It boasts an initial capacity of 200,000 cu m per day.
Meanwhile, Saudi-based Al Rajhi Bank is providing a SR258 million ($69 million) Islamic debt facility for the development of the ISTP coming up near Taif city in the Makkah province. SWPC and a consortium of Spanish utility developer Cobra and Tawzea last year announced the financial closure for the 270,000-cu-m-per-day project, being implemented under a BOOT (build, own, operate and transfer) model. The Cobra-Tawzea consortium has set up a new Saudi company, Taif Independent Water Plant Company, which will manage and operate the plant for a period of 25 years.
Another plant under construction,the Jeddah Airport 2 project will have a capacity of 300,000 expandable to 500,000 cu m/day. The project developers are Marafiq, Amwal Al Khaleej and Veolia and the plant is expected to begin commercial operations in 2023.