On 4 February Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA) announced a Memorandum of Understanding with the Federal Electricity and Water Authority (FEWA) to develop a 136,383 m3/day SWRO plant in Al Zawra, Emirate of Ajman. The project is slated for completion in 2017 and will supply drinking water to the Northern Emirates.
FEWA, partnered with TAQA, has added 564,000 m3/day of desalination capacity in the past five years through combined power and water project (IWPP) tenders– the latest being the Al Mirfa tender in 2013 requiring 136,380 m3/day of desalination capacity and 1,600 MW of CCGT generation capacity on a build own, operate basis.
The Al Zawra announcement is unique in that the desalination plant will not be connected to a power plant. This focus on stand-alone water infrastructure underscores TAQA’s more dedicated push into the water sector. On 21 January the company announced it will create a dedicated water unit that seeks international expansion opportunities independent of its energy activity.
- TAQA thirsts for more water growth.
- Power entry, then water for geographic expansion.
- Financing a key differentiator among IWPP competitive landscape.