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Sun 28 Nov 2010 03:57 PM

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Kuwait plans $1.8bn waste water treatment plant

The new plant in Umm Al Hayman, south of Kuwait City, will be built in two phases

Kuwait plans $1.8bn waste water treatment plant
Most of the Kuwait’s new construction projects fall under a four-year $209.22bn development plan. (Bloomberg Images)

Kuwait, the fifth-biggest oil producer in the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, plans to build a 500 million-dinar ($1.8bn) waste-water treatment plant to serve cities being built in the south.

“This plant has to be operational by January 2015, or there will be another catastrophe, because there are cities being built here and there and these cities will be ready for living in by that date,” Hashem Altabtabaei, technical team leader at the Partnerships Technical Bureau and a Finance Ministry official, said today in an interview near Kuwait City.

A waste water treatment-plant breakdown last year in Mishref, south of Kuwait City, resulted in the dumping of hundreds of thousands of cubic metres of untreated sewage into Kuwait’s sea daily. The plant is not yet working properly.

The new plant, to be located in Umm Al Hayman, south of Kuwait City, will be built in two phases. It will have the capacity to process 650,000 cubic metres per day of waste water from households in southern Kuwait. The plan is for the government to buy back the processed water and monitor the quality, Altabtabaei said.

The government needs to raise its power-generation capacity to meet the expansion of residential developments across Kuwait, to boost manufacturing and develop new industries such as tourism. Most of the country’s new construction projects fall under a four-year 30.8 billion dinar ($209.22bn) development plan.

“It’s going to be one of the biggest waste management plants in the region,” Altabtabaei said. “We already short- listed ten transaction advisers” who have until December 23 to submit technical and financial proposals, he said.

The plant is part of the government’s Public-Private Partnership programme, begun in 2008 to allow private capital and expertise into industries normally under state control. A company will be established to build the Umm Al Hayman plant, with 50 percent of the shares being sold in an initial public offering, 40 percent tendered to private stakeholders and ten percent owned by the government, he said.

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