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First privatised Saudi IWPP grinds into action

US $2.5bn SWEC desal plant starts operations

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Shuwaiba 3 provides 900MW capacity and desalination capability.
Shuwaiba 3 provides 900MW capacity and desalination capability.

Shuaiba Water and Electricity Company (SWEC) has started operations at Saudi Arabia’s first independent water and power project (IWPP).

The Shuaiba 3 plant, which has 900MW capacity and the ability to produce 800,000 cubic metres of water a day, came online on July 25.

It is located south of Jeddah on the Red Sea coast and will supply water to Makkah, Jeddah, Taif and Baha.

"The continued increase in population density in the kingdom lead to the increasing need for the consumption of electricity and desalinated water," Al Hayat newspaper reported Yahya Al Yahya, the head of SWEC’s board of directors as saying, according to Reuters.

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