Govt to regulate water sector in Oman
The move will place all water-related facilities in one portfolio
Qais bin Saud al Zakwani, deputy executive director of Oman's Electricity Regulatory Authority, has said that the government is determined to regulate the water sector in the same way that it succeeded in regulating the electricity sector through power generation and electricity transmission.
The Public Authority for Electricity and Water (PAEW) will lead efforts for the restructuring of the water sector, said Al Zakwani, noting that the move will place all water-related facilities in the Sultanate in one portfolio and within the purviews of PAEW which, as a first step, plans to set up a new department for gathering water-related data to help draft a water sector database.
Al Zakwani pointed out that the restructuring of the water sector will benefit greatly from the lessons learned from the electricity sector's regulation, mainly ways to overcome the shortage of information. Market tools such as RBIX and other regulations will be activated, said al Zakwani. Another challenge will be the growing dependence on fossil fuels in generating electricity, something which might not feasible in the long run, al Zakwani added.
He explained that, as per 2012 statistics, the source of 97.5 per cent of electricity generated last year was gas, while 2.5 per cent of electrical power was generated by diesel. Therefore, it is time sources of fuel used in power generation is diversified to spare the country depletion of gas reserves.
There are few alternatives, since it is confirmed that the Sultanate will not use nuclear power to generate electricity and due to lack of support for a proposal to set up a coal-operated station for the production of electricity in the Sultanate, said al Zakwani.
One of the possible solutions is to import gas and another depends on renewable energy, a potential source on which future policies of diversification of fuel sources attach great hopes, said Al Zakwani.