11 firms vie for Oman’s biggest water project

Leading international water utilities are among 11 firms that have signalled their interest to participate in a competitive tender for the development of Oman’s biggest desalination plant, which is proposed to be established at Al Ghubrah in Muscat Governorate.
With a capacity of 300,000 cubic metres / day (equivalent to 66 million imperial gallons per day — MIGD), the greenfield Independent Water Project (IWP) will surpass in size and capacity a pair of massive IWPs currently under construction at Barka (the 62 MIGD Barka VI scheme) and Suhar (55 MIGD Suhar IWP). The latest project, slated to come on stream in the first quarter of 2022, will help meet the burgeoning potable water needs of Muscat Governorate, as well as the wider north Oman water grid.
Yesterday, the Oman Power and Water Procurement Company (OPWP), which has the sole mandate to procure new power and water capacity under the sector law, listed 11 international consortiums and firms as having submitted their Statement of Qualifications (SoQ) in preparation to bid for the giant Ghubrah III IWP, as the new project is dubbed.
The list includes: International Company for Water and Power Projects (ACWA Power); Cobra Instalaciones Y Servicio SA, FCC Aqualia, SA, Majis Industrial Service SAOC; International Power SA (IPSA); GS Inima Environment SA; Marubeni Corporation; Abengoa, Shumookh Investment and Services SAOC, Engineering Procurement & Project Management (EPPM) and Al Bashair Investment Co LLC; Sembcorp Utilities Pte Ltd; Sojitz Corporation; SUEZ International; Sumitomo Corporation and Malakoff International Limited; and UTICO FZC, IDB Infrastructure Fund II BSC and United Water Limited.
“The evaluation of SoQs is currently underway and applicants will be informed of the status of their qualification after the process is completed and the necessary approvals are obtained,” OPWP said in a statement.
The successful bidder will be awarded a license for the development, financing, design, engineering, construction, ownership, operation and maintenance of the Ghubrah III IWP. The project, according to the procurer, will come up at a brownfield plot adjoining the existing Ghubrah Independent Water and Power Project (IWPP), which is due to be decommissioned during the construction of the new water scheme.
Unlike an IWPP, which is co-located with a power generation plant, the new Ghubrah III IWP will be a standalone scheme operating on electricity supplied from the grid.
Advising OPWP on the procurement and delivery of the project is the consortium of KPMG Lower Gulf Limited, Fichtner GmbH and DLA Piper Middle East LLP.