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Emaar TEC seeks utilities partner for KAEC

Emaar on lookout for power generation and desal companies.

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Pylons in Saudi Arabia.
Pylons in Saudi Arabia.

Emaar The Economic City, master developer of King Abdullah Economic City north of Jeddah, is looking for a private sector firm to build desalination plants and supply water to the city.

Chief operating officer Mike Chihoski said that although there is a small desalination plant with a capacity of 20,000m2 per day, which he said will meet the city's needs for the next couple of years, more capacity will be needed as more people and companies move into the area.

"We really have to step this up. We have plans for two large desalinsation plants right now. We’re likely to be going to go to market to build one later this year," he said.

"Right now we’re in discussions with a couple of engineering firms about designing a full masterplan for water, wastewater and reclaimed water. We’re looking to go out to market this year for a partner on a build, operate, transfer-type model.

"We recognise that we do not want to be a utility. So we want to partner with someone who can be."

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