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ESSENTIAL INSIGHTS FOR MIDDLE EAST WA WATER, ATE TER ER R,, G GAS AS AND ELECTRICITY PROFESSIONALS AS

December 2009

• Vol 3. Issue 12

UNLOCKING LIBYA An ERP giant’s experience in a fast-growing nation

BILLING ME SOFTLY DAVID H KOCH, PRESIDENT, KOCH MEMBRANE SYSTEMS

Hi-tech metering rolls out in the Middle East

WATER WISDOM David D avid H K Koch och aassesses ssesses prospects off tthe he ffuture uture p rospectts o technology membrane tec chnolo ogy

INTERNATIONAL DESALINATION ASSOCIATION WORLD CONGRESS Experts discuss the hottest trends in the world’s biggest desalination market Business Publication An An ITPITP Business Publication


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CONTENTS

December 2009 Issue 12

10

2 COMMENT Celebrating the new GCC interconnection grid.

4 REGIONAL UPDATE A round-up of some of the biggest headlines in the region.

10 NEWS ANALYSIS Local companies are still hiring as infrastructure budgets rocket.

13 TECH FOCUS Megger’s new automatic relay test and the IEC 61850 standard.

Metito group human capital director Hisham Fadda

Delegates at the IFS/GECOL event in Tripoli

18

14 COVER STORY Billionaire David H Koch has forged a strong link with the water industry.

18 NORTH AFRICA FOCUS

Koch Membrane Systems president David H Koch

An ERP giant’s experience with GECOL, the state electricity provider in Libya.

21 IDA FOCUS Utilities Middle East speaks to the world’s most important desalination executives.

30 NEW TECHNOLOGIES

14 ABB’s Mohammed Samkari

Smart meter roll-outs are taking place across the UAE.

35 DISTRICT COOLING DSI’s Tawfiq Abu Soud discusses the need for tighter regulation.

36 PROJECT TRACKER A select list of current regional utilities projects.

38 TENDERS Opportunities available in the Middle East.

30

Landis+Gyr’s E450 meter

www.utilities-me.com

40 PEOPLE METER

40

ABB’s Mohammed Samkari reviews his firm’s project activities in Saudi Arabia.

December 2009

Utilities Middle East 1


COMMENT Middle East

On the starting grid...

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Why the new interconnection should be celebrated GETTY IMAGES

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Blackouts in the GCC: Soon to be a thing of the past?

D

ecember sees the official launch of the most important development to hit the GCC’s electricity markets in recent years – the region-wide interconnection grid. The premise behind the grid – which is already operational in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar and Bahrain – is simple; by utilising spare capacity from other countries, the GCC states will aim to avoid the blackouts that have become endemic. The GCC Interconnection Authority (GCCIA) says that power demand is likely to rise from 32GW in 2003 to around 94GW in 2028, and believes that the cost-benefit ratio of the scheme for all six countries weighs in at around 1.8. GCC countries will be able to trade around half the capacity of their biggest power plant – so around 1,200MW for Saudi Arabia, and so on. However, one of the grid’s major problems is that the peak load for each GCC country falls simultaneously, meaning that spare capacity is at a premium. According to a state news agency, Kuwait’s load this summer was such that it asked gas-rich Qatar to cover a potential shortfall. In what is hopefully not a sign of things to come, Qatar refused, saying it had no power to spare. But these are early days. Massive recent and ongoing investment in new power plants mean

that countries such as Saudi Arabia are scheduled to have excess capacity in the beginning of next year, according to a recent report from BMI. While peak load periods are the same for all GCC nations, connection to other regional power pools, such as EJLIST and the Arab Maghreb, will provide access to other key electricity markets. The grid will also provide an opportunity to capitalise on any fibre-optic excess capacity going spare. In addition, the GCCIA says that spinning reserves will be shared to cover emergency operating conditions, and costs will be even further lowered by using the most economic generation unit in the connected systems. Another bonus is that there should, in theory, be a reduced need for new power plants. No-one is expecting that the grid will solve everyone’s problems immediately. But with more power plants coming online and the slow introduction of nuclear power into the grid at some point towards the end of the next decade in the UAE, the optimists will believe that the ‘Sharjah scenario’ will soon be an unpleasant footnote in the annals of GCC electricity history.

● December 2009

Circulation Head of Circulation & Database Gaurav Gulati Marketing Marketing Manager Daniel Fewtrell ITP Digital Director Peter Conmy ITP Group Chairman Andrew Neil Managing Director Robert Serafin Finance Director Toby Jay Spencer-Davies Board of Directors K.M. Jamieson, Mike Bayman, Walid Akawi, Neil Davies, Rob Corder, Mary Serafin Circulation Customer Service Tel: +971 4 435 6000

Certain images in this issue are available for purchase. Please contact itpimages@itp.com for further details or visit www.itpimages.com. Printed by Atlas Printing Press LLC, Subscribe online at www.itp.com/subscriptions The publishers regret that they cannot accept liability for error or omissions contained in this publication, however caused. The opinions and views contained in this publication are not necessarily those of the publishers. Readers are advised to seek specialist advice before acting on information contained in this publication which is provided for general use and may not be appropriate for the reader’s particular circumstances. The ownership of trademarks is acknowledged. No part of this publication or any part of the contents thereof may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form without the permission of the publishers in writing. An exemption is hereby granted for extracts used for the purpose of fair review.

Ed Attwood, Editor E-mail: edward.attwood@itp.com

To subscribe please visit www.itp.com/subscriptions 2 Utilities Middle East

Group Production Manager Kyle Smith Production Manager Eleanor Zwanepoel Production Coordinator Devaprakash Managing Picture Desk Patrick Littlejohn General Manager - Regional Distribution Shaded Ali Shaded Distribution Manager Karima Ashwell Distribution Executive Nada Al Alami

Published by and © 2009 ITP Business Publishing, a member of the ITP Publishing Group Ltd. Registered in the B.V.I. under Company Registration number 1402846.

www.utilities-me.com


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Answers for energy.


REGIONAL UPDATE

IDA team examines Gulf pollution Task force to consider fall-out from desalination; Bahrain offers to hold first meeting in 2010 A task force will be set up to consider the effects of pollution in the Arabian Gulf caused by the desalination industry, according to speakers at the launch ceremony of the International Desalination Association (IDA)’s World Congress. The issue of pollution in the Gulf has been raised before, particularly in light of the fact that water exchange in the inland sea is only full exchanged every eight or nine years, according to some experts. Discussions were held over the make-up of the committee during the desalination industry’s marquee annual event, which took place at Dubai’s Atlantis Resort on the Palm Jumeirah. The move was backed by GCC ministers present at the launch, who agreed that further action was needed in order to safeguard the industry in the region. “Concentrated brines from these plants are discharged into the oceans without full treatment, which is of growing concern,” Bahrain’s Minister of Electricity and Water, Fahmi Bin Ali Al Jowder told delegates. “There is a necessity to provide strict legislation on the discharge of effluent from desalina-

Fluids firm in Gulf expansion Fluid systems technology designer Swagelok has expanded its sales and service teams by announcing five new regional partnerships. The representatives include Abu Dhabi Oilfield Services (UAE); Petroleum Technology Co. (Qatar); Purshottam Kanji Trading Co. (Oman); and Supply & Project Services, a division of Dar Al Riyadh Holding Company (KSA).

4 Utilities Middle East

December 2009

IDA President Lisa Henthorne and local officials open the IDA World Congress in Dubai in November.

tion facilities. In this context, we at the Electricity and Water Authority would be happy to hold the first meeting of the task force in Bahrain, and propose that this meeting should be held in the first part of 2010,” Al Jowder added.

Dr Rashid Ahmad Bin Fahad, the UAE Minister of Environment and Water, criticised what he described as “irresponsible practices in some sectors”, and added that water demand would increase from 5-7 billion cubic metres by 2020.

“A steering committee has been formed, primarily composed of individuals from the region representing utilities and IDA board members with global expertise,” IDA president Lisa Henthorne told Utilities Middle East.

Sembcorp: Salalah IWPP nears financial close The long-running saga of the US$1 billion Salalah IWPP appears to be coming to a close, after Singapore’s Sembcorp, the initial preferred bidder on the project, claimed it had lined up the financing. “The financing is now in place, with all the banks lined up”, a source told local media. The firm regained preferred bidder status in June after Oman Power & Water Procurement Company went back to the

second- and third-ranked consortiums as a result of Sembcorp’s decision to ask the GCC utility to provide more money for the deal. The Salalah IWPP, which is now behind schedule, will produce 400MW of power and as well as 15 million gallons per day of desalinated water. “The thaw in the project finance market now is becoming evident - it has also reached the peripher y of the Gulf-region market,

where Salalah is located both physically and business-wise (as financial risk after all is higher in Oman than in Abu Dhabi or Qatar, which hitherto have seen more of the project finance thaw),” said IHS Global Insight Middle East energy analyst Samuel Ciszuk. “It is increasingly apparent that Middle Eastern actors are gaining market shares in the project finance market, thanks to improved oil prices.” www.utilities-me.com


REGIONAL UPDATE

Gas producers hurting But electricity production is still driving regional demand Middle East gas producers are pressing ahead with expansion plans despite fears that the market could suffer an oversupply of up to 15 percent, a new report has said. The Booz & Company study said that there was no doubt that the region’s gas producers were feeling the effect of the economic crisis. Demand destruction in Asian markets, which are the traditional recipients of GCC gas, were challenging export schemes, it added. But the report said many regional national oil companies (NOCs) including those in Iran, Qatar and the UAE, were still confident and were pressing ahead with their ambitious plans to increase gas output. “Unlike developed countries, Middle Eastern markets are still hungry for gas, with demand expected to increase by at least 6 per cent per annum in the medium-term, the report added. “The major driver for this growth is electricity production, which is continuing to grow at a high rate, in part due to relatively low and subsidised electricity tariffs,” Booz & Company

www.utilities-me.com

ABB INKS UAE PIPE DEAL Power and automation giant ABB has won a US$21 million contract with EPC contractor China Petroleum Engineering & Construction Corporation to design and supply the integrated electrical system on the $1 billion Abu Dhabi Crude Oil Pipeline (ADCOP). As part of the agreement, ABB will supply a range of electrical equipment, including 33kV gas-insulated switchgear, ring main units, capacitor banks and resistors.

Booz & Company’s George Sarraf says electricity production continues to grow.

partner George Sarraf said. “While NOCs might be struggling to find new export markets for their gas or face challenges over pricing - domestic gas needs are significant. This situation is likely to keep projects on track for domestic supply, and also serve the region’s needs,” he added. The report said the economic downturn had the potential to “profoundly change” global gas markets. Deeply negative forecasts for industrial output in developed countries will reduce worldwide demand for natural gas in 2009 and 2010 - the

first time in history - while potentially setting back the market for up to 10 years, according to Booz & Company’s report called ‘An Unprecedented Market: How the recession is changing global gas markets’. The report found that the market would be in a position of oversupply of between five and 15 percent this year and the next. “This unprecedented worldwide drop in demand for natural gas may well set back global natural gas markets in terms of growth and profitability, by as much as 10 years,” added Sarraf.

Tabreed sees strong improvement in Q3 figures Abu Dhabi’s National Central Cooling Company (Tabreed) posted gross profits of 9% in the third quarter, although non-cash finance costs associated with the 2011 convertible sukuk menat that net profits overall slid by around 4% year-on-year. Total revenue rose by a strong 15% to US$155.4 million, while chilled water revenue rose by 27% year-on-year. “We have also been making progress on improving our operational efficiencies for existing operations,” said Sujit S. Parhar,

HIGHLIGHTS

Tabreed CEO. “Our priority continues to be reducing our costs and corporate overheads and improving our operational efficiencies so that we can continue to meet the region’s infrastructure needs.” The results are a welcome improvement on Tabreed’s second-quarter figures, which saw revenue dip by 2.7% in comparison to the first quarter, according to UME’s calculations. Reported net income dropped by around 4% in the first half in comparison to the same period a year earlier.

17

The number of stations being built on Saudi Arabia’s Princess Nura University’s new railway network See interview on page 40

AQUATECH SEALS EGYPT DESAL CONTRACT Aquatech has won a contract to design and supply a Multiple Effect Distillation (MED) desalination system for Abu Qir Thermal Power Plant, on Egypt’s Mediterranean coast. The deal was awarded by West Delta Electricity Production Company. The Abu Qir facility comprises two MED with Thermal Vapor Compression (MED-TVC) units, which will supply fresh water to boilers and other users.

SQH BUILDS SYRIAN STPS Syrian-Qatari Holding (SQH) has signed an MoU with the Ministry of Housing and Construction for a BOT contract to build two sewage treatment plants in a Damascene suburb and in the city of Swuedah. The news was announced during the Public Private Partnership Conference being held in the Syrian capital, shortly after the ministry had indicated that the country needed around 183 new STPs to keep up with demand.

December 2009

Utilities Middle East 5


REGIONAL UPDATE

HIGHLIGHTS SIEMENS EYES SAUDI EXPANSION Siemens sees the Saudi market as a key area in which to expand its operations, particularly in light of the government’s decision to invest US $400 billion in a five-year programme to increase energy production. “The Saudi gas programme is attractive. They have a lot of gas and want to make energy out of it,”Ali Hamdani, the vice-president of the energy, oil and gas division of Siemens in Saudi Arabia told Bloomberg.

QATAR DEMAND RISES Qatar has spent $1.9bn on upgrading and expanding electricity and water networks in the nine months to September 30 this year as demand for power increased by 14%. Kahramaa (Qatar Electricity and Water Corporation) said despite the sharp rise in consumption in 2009, compared to the previous year, it was capable of coping with it.

DOW’S NEW ELEMENTS Dow Water & Process Solutions (DW&PS) has announced the launch of four new DOW FILMTEC elements for seawater treatment. Dow says the new 440i seawater elements offer high rejection, low energy requirements and exceptional flow rates. The SW30XHR-440 AND SW30XHR-440i elements have the highest seawater rejection in the company’s FILMTEC range, enabling quality requirements to be met with single-pass seawater systems in most normal situations.

6 Utilities Middle East

December 2009

Areva EPR in safety row Concerns raised as UAE $40bn nuclear plant contract nears A number of issues raised by safety agencies in the UK, France and Finland about Areva’s latest nuclear reactor are coming at the worst possible time for a French consortium hoping to win a US$40bn contract to build power plants in Abu Dhabi. European regulators have argued that there is insufficient independence between day-to-day safety systems and emergency systems on the brand new European Pressurised Reactors (EPR). “Independence is important because, if a safety system provides protection against the failure of a control system, then they should not fail together,” the British, French and Finnish agencies said in a joint statement, according to AFP. Areva is already facing serious problems at the Olkiluoto nuclear plant in Finland, which was initially planned to open this year. Instead, the facility will now open at 2012, at the earliest, with extra costs adding another 50% to the initial price tag. “The EPR technology has not been called into question,” said French prime minister Francois Fillon in a local paper, according to Reuters.

Areva chief executive officer Anne Lauvergeon.

“There needs to be extreme rigour in terms of safety. I have no doubt that the problems raised by the Authority will be resolved and that French reactors will be among the world’s best and safest,” Fillon added Earlier this year, the French consortium consisting of Areva, GDF Suez and Total was considered to be in pole position for the Abu Dhabi contract, which is expected to be awarded before end-2009. But other consortiums are also heavily backed.

The United Arab Emirates is currently in the advanced stage of evaluating the bids, according to Hamad Al Kaabi, the country’s representative to the IAEA, who spoke to Reuters back in October. Other consortiums vying for the contract are the Japanese-US alliance between Hitachi and GE and a South Korea-led partnership consisting of Korea Electric Power, Samsung, Hyundai and US company Westinghouse.

Giant regional solar project takes another step The Desertec Industrial Initiative, a plan to ship electricity to Europe via a vast solar array network in the deserts of the MENA region, has taken its latest step through the signing of articles of assocation to create a limited company. Twelve companies signed the documents that have established DII GmbH, and Paul Van Son has been elected as CEO. Van Son has previously held roles as managing director of companies such as Deutsche Essent and Econcern.

“We recognise and strongly support the Desertec vision as a pivotal part of the transition to a sustainable energy supply in the MENA countries and Europe,” said Van Son. “Now the time has come to turn this vision into reality. That implies intensive cooperation with many parties and cultures to create a sound basis for feasible investments into renewable energy technologies and interconnected grids. “Since an announcement in July that launched Desertec, the proj-

ect has been working to win support from Middle Eastern and European countries,” Van Son said. Shareholders of the DII include ABB, ABENGOA Solar, Cevital, the DESERTEC Foundation, Deutsche Bank, E.ON, HSH Nordbank, MAN Solar Millennium, Munich Re, M+W Zander, RWE, SCHOTT Solar and Siemens. Questions have been raised as to whether the project is viable, especially given the estimated US $550 billion price tag. www.utilities-me.com


REGIONAL UPDATE

SWCC clarifies project details Exclusive: Governor outlines plans for Yanbu and Ras Al Zour megaprojects Saudi Arabia’s Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC) has released details about its Ras Al Zour and Yanbu megaprojects. The state desalination agency was handed responsibility for the two sites in September after the Saudi government stepped in to pull the former IWPPs earlier this year. “The capacity for Ras Al Zour is 2,400MW and 1,025,000 cubic metres of desalinated water, which covers the needs of SWCC (1,000,000 cubic metres) and Maaden (25,000 cubic metres,” SWCC governor Fehied Al-Shareef told Utilities Middle East. “On the power side, 1,350MW is for

www.utilities-me.com

Maaden, with a total of 1,050MW for SEC.” Ras Al Zour is expected to cost around 20-25% less than initial US $6 billion estimates. Al-Shareef confirmed that documents were expected to be submitted by mid-November, with offers earmarked for submission by the end of the first half of 2010. The SWCC governor says that the former Yanbu IWPP will now have a 1,700MW capacity (650MW for Marafiq Yanbu and 1,050 for SEC) and 550,000 cubic metres of desalinated water (400,000 cubic metres for SWCC and 150,000 for Marafiq Yanbu).

Yanbu will produce 1,700MW and 550,000 cubic metres of desalinated water.

December 2009

Utilities Middle East 7


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WEB HIGHLIGHTS

ONLINE ANALYSIS

ONLINE ANALYSIS

GE puts emphasis on wastewater GE’s chief executive has outlined plans to bolster research and technology development in wastewater reuse by 50% in the next two to three years as it tries to gain a larger foothold in what is estimated to be a US$5 billion sector globally.

Most popular headlines EDITOR’S PICK

SWCC report details future re projects Saudi Arabia’s Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC) has provided a review of its current and future projects in its latest annual report, which includes details of three expansions to existing desalination plants in various locations around the country.

BREAKING NEWS AND VIEWS FIRST

WorleyParsons signs nuclear deal in Jordan Country hopes to sign final strategic partner by end-2012 and will establish three uranium mines to provide feedstock for the nuclear power plant.

Empower launches sub-metering facility District cooling major pioneers product in Business Bay, which will allow end-users to control consumption at the Dubai development.

ABB signs US$120mn contract at Saudi university– see story on page 10 Power specialist to provide three substations at the Riyadh site of the US$5 billion Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University. www.utilities-me.com

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Will safety row affect UAE nuclear decision? Exclusive: SWCC clarifies project details Bapco signs turbine deal with Technip World’s biggest PV project secures land deal Giant MENA project secures land deal Questions remain over new 1,500MW ADWEA plant 7. Ice thermal storage becoming ‘hot ticket’ 8. Technology focus: GE Energy’s Frame 7FA gas turbine 9. Taqa CEO to leave company after reshuffle 10. King of Jordan inaugurates power plant

SPOT POLL

Will the GCC interconnection grid solve the Gulf’s outage problems?

39.4 % NO 15.2 % Eventually 45.5 % YES

December 2009

Utilities Middle East 9


NEWS ANALYSIS

Recruitment market to stabilise, say experts Local companies still hiring staff as regional infrastructure budgets rocket Regional infrastructure companies believe that the recruitment market has matured as a result of the economic crisis, and that there is still a strong pool of professionals available for hire. Earlier this year, a Dubai-based recruitment website claimed that while the number of vacancies being posted in most verticals had shrunk considerably, the demand for infrastructure-related functions had rocketed by nearly 150% on the back of ongoing government investment in this crucial segment. Although this was a review by one particular agency – and not indicative of recruitment patterns across all sectors and all countries of the GCC – to the casual observer, the premise seems obvious. While certain sectors, particularly the real estate sector in Dubai, for example, have been flayed by the economic crisis, governments and local authorities across the region have been putting money where their collective mouths are. Saudi Arabia, for example, has set aside a whopping 16% of its total capital spending (around US$9.35 billion) on the water, agriculture and infrastructure sector in its budget for this, an increase of 25% on last year. Abu Dhabi is set to apportion 17.5% of its $11.9 billion budget for 2010 on the segment. All of this is surely means safe jobs and strong prospects for infrastructure professionals, including those working and recruiting in the utilities industries.

10 Utilities Middle East

Government backing for the infrastructure segment is leading to normalisation in the recruitment field, according to local HR directors.

But behind the headlines, what is the reality on the ground? “There is some truth in the statement that this sector has remained strong from the recruitment side,” said Hisham Fadda, group human capital director at water company Metito. “But one of the major changes has been the fact that the whole recruitment business had descended into a price war before the economic crisis hit. This has now stabilised and the market has become more realistic.” Fadda’s belief is that the switch in psychology has led to decisions on the part of some staff to stay put,

December 2009

“We are actually undergoing a recruitment drive for approximately 150 new engineering and technical personnel” evaluate their options and maintain job security. Firms have now ceased fighting over potential staff and raising salaries to unsustainable levels, leading to a more responsible approach. “The outcome points towards a more ratio-

nal market, like in the UK, where the difference in salary for certain clerical staff only varies by a few hundred pounds per annum from different agencies,” Fadda said. Companies based in Saudi Arabia have long envied Dubai’s

www.utilities-me.com


NEWS ANALYSIS

attractions for the expatriate workforce. “The key recruitment issue we face at present is convincing prospective new staff to leave current employment often to a new region, with many new SETE Energy staff coming from Europe and the US,” indicated George Antonopoulous, CEO of SETE Energy. “As a result of the business environment, the major challenge we have is finding staff who are willing to relocate fulltime to the Kingdom and to retain them in-Kingdom.” SETE Energy is creatively combating this problem mainly by recruiting through word-ofmouth within the Latsis Group (the owning group), a diverse company that has the necessary technical personnel contacts in oil, energy and infrastructure within the EU to refer new staff. “But generally speaking, infrastructure projects

www.utilities-me.com

SETE Energy's George Antonopoulos.

and recruiting for them within the region and specifically KSA will always remain strong due to several factors, the most significant of which is that state expenditure on infrastructure remains a prominent part of national budgets yearon-year,” Antonopoulos added.

The key question is whether local companies are still hiring. Metito, which says its staffing levels were not affected as a result of the crisis, thinks that the outlook is positive. “I believe we’ll be in a position to hire more staff soon,” said Fadda. “There are a lot of projects for us in the pipeline, but we’re being very selective.” The Metito executive believes that a measured approach to company growth in the boom years has helped it through the last 12 months or so, and that the issue of motivation has come to the fore. “We haven’t stopped our bonus schemes and rewards to our staff, and we have been able to afford to continue to do this precisely because we didn’t go wild in the first place,” he added. For SETE Energy, an expanded team is definitely on the horizon.

“Specifically for 2008-2009, this has been a very positive period for us in terms of signing off new projects and we are actually undergoing a recruitment drive for approximately 150 new engineering and technical personnel in the medium term,” Antonopoulos stated.

Metito's Hisham Fadda.

December 2009

Utilities Middle East 11


TECH FOCUS

Testing to a new protocol Megger product manager Stan Thompson reviews the IEC 61850 standard INTRODUCTION TO IEC 61850 The latest developments in the field of protection testing encompass the testing of relays and protection schemes which use the IEC 61850 protocol, but what is IEC 61850? The International IEC 61850 standard is relatively new. It was developed to control and protect power systems by standardising the exchange of information between all intelligent electronic devices (IED) within an automated substation and a remote control link. Some of the benefits of the IEC 61850 standard are: Megger's automatic relay test offers the option of testing IEC 61850 applications.

• • • • •

Reduce dependence on multiple protocols Reduce construction cost by eliminating most copper wiring Automate substations Real Time Distributed Computing Advanced Management Capability

TESTING RELAYS USING THE IEC 61850 “GOOSE “ The substation high speed per-topeer messaging is accomplished using what is called the “GOOSE” Generic Object Oriented Substation Event message. When we speak of peer-to-peer messaging we are talking about the exchange of informa-

tion between relays and other protective devices in the substation. In the traditional substation, copper wires run from the trip contacts of a relay to the trip coil on a circuit breaker. In an IEC 61850 substation instead of copper wires the trip GOOSE message will be sent via the Ethernet cable or similar fiber-optic communication cable to trip the circuit breaker. This message will be used extensively when performing tests. The first step in testing a relay or a protection scheme, which operates using IEC 61850 protocol, is the ability to “read” these messages and respond accordingly at high speed. There are different

types of GOOSE messages that we work with. The relay being tested will “publish” or send a trip GOOSE to tell the breaker to trip. The test set “subscribes” to the GOOSE issued by the relay under test. When the test set reads the trip GOOSE, it will “publish” a GOOSE message telling the relay that the breaker tripped. In a trip and reclose scheme, the relay may “publish” another GOOSE telling the breaker to Close, the test set will read the close GOOSE, and then publish a GOOSE back to the relay saying that the circuit breaker has closed, and so on. The Megger Model MPRT automatic relay test sets offer the option

of testing IEC 61850 applications. Enhancements to the software and hardware provide an extremely user-friendly package for testing the protection and control applications in an IEC61850 substation environment. This is achieved by basically changing the analogue outputs of the test set in response to GOOSE messages at high speed. The user associates a specific GOOSE from a specific device to a specific Binary Input (as if physically monitoring a relay trip contact or logic output). The MPRT firmware provides for the simultaneous capture of multiple GOOSE messages. While physically the MPRT has a limited number of Binary Inputs (10) and Outputs (6), the user can assign up as many as to 16 Soft Binary Inputs and 16 Soft Binary Outputs. This allows the user to monitor up to 16 GOOSE messages simultaneously. Similarly, the user can also assign and publish multiple GOOSE messages using the multiple Soft Binary Outputs, which provides more testing flexibility and faster response times. One of the applications is the use for interoperability tests of multiple relays. Stan Thompson’s full article is available on www.utilities-me.com

EVENT HORIZON December 7-9 ME Wastewater Treatment & Reuse Abu Dhabi, UAE www.meed.com/events/wastewater

January 7-9 7th Everything About Water Expo Chennai, India www.eawater.com/expo

January 18-21 World Future Energy Summit Abu Dhabi, UAE www.worldfutureenergysummit.com

February 9-11 Industrial Automation Middle East Dubai, UAE www.iirme.com

March 9-11 WETEX Exhibit Dubai, UAE www.wetex.ae

March 29-31 Arabian Power & Water Summit Abu Dhabi, UAE www.arabianpowerandwater.com

December 9 MEP Awards Dubai, UAE www.constructionweekonline.com

January 19-20 1st MENA Water Resource World Dubai, UAE www.cmtevents.com

February 9-11 Middle East Electricity 2010 Dubai, UAE www.iirme.com

February 14-16 Middle East Project Finance 2010 Manama, Bahrain www.meedconferences.com/ projectfinance

March 22-25 WSTA 9th Gulf Water Conference Muscat, Oman www.wstagcc.org

April 12-15 Project Qatar Doha, Qatar www.eventseye.com

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December 2009

Utilities Middle East 13


INTERVIEW

Water Wisdom Better known as one of the world’s most generous philanthropists, Koch Industries joint owner David H Koch has forged a strong link with the water industry

14 Utilities Middle East

December 2009

I

t’s not often that Utilities Middle East finds itself jostling for space on a meeting schedule that includes former US President George Bush Bus and Dubai ruler HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Moh Maktoum, bu but then David H Koch is no ordinary iinterviewee. As the joint join owner and executive vice president of Koch Industries presid – one of the largest privately held companies in the US - Koch com has interests intere in a number of verticals, not least the oil and gas sectors, but and petrochemicals petro it is soon obvious that the water is where his heart lies. iindustry d Koch developed his keen interest in membranes at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and after joining Koch Industries in 1970, took over as president of technology outfit Abcor, which eventually changed its name to Koch Membrane Systems (KMS) in 1981. It was this breadth of experience that led the International Desalination Association (IDA) to invite Koch to be the keywww.utilities-me.com


INTERVIEW

“There are still tremendous opportunities in the MBR area and all sorts of modifications that can reduce the cost of MBR cartridges”

note speaker at last month’s World Congress, held in Dubai. In front of a cast of luminaries, which included a number of the GCC’s electricity and water ministers, the KMS president was unrestrained in his praise for the desalination sector and its importance with regard to future global stability. In person, David Koch cuts an imposing figure, but his enthusiasm for the sector and affability are somewhat infectious. And when the interview turns to the new products being rolled out by his company in the water market, he seems clearly in his element. On the new technologies front, Koch is keen to stress the merits of KMS’ newly re-engineered largediameter seawater membrane, which was ably demonstrated with the presence of an 18-inch MegaMagnum element that took pride of place at the firm’s stand during IDA week. “It’s a perfect example of the economies of scale, and large elements and larger housing in principle should cost less on a squarefoot basis,” he explains. “I think that when we start getting large orders and volumes through, we can make these large elements a lower cost on the square-foot basis than the smaller elements. We’ve built a highly automated membrane manufacturing line, and we can push a lot of volume through it.” Another benefit, says Koch, is that the housing weighs a third less than an equivalent number of 8-inch seawater housings at the same rated operating pressure. Furthermore, KMS is working on a configuration that will allow the company to assemble the housings together, which www.utilities-me.com

could reduce costs even further. “Depending on how the old 8-inch system was configured, you’re looking at savings of between 15-25%,” says Koch. “If you’re talking about a system that costs around US$30-50 million, that’s serious money.” In addition, the use of large elements has the potential to lower facility footprints by as much as half, a point that is useful not only from a cost point of view, but also where systems are largely constrained by space, such as in urban areas, marine vessels or oil platforms. “I think that in order to be really successful in the large-element business, you have to offer the whole system; you can’t just sell the elements to the client and tell them to incorporate the products into their next project,” Koch explains. “Everything has to be integrated in a very systemic way.” It’s no secret that demand for water in the Middle East is skyrocketing and the demands for the kind of systems that KMS manufactures are also rising steadily. The challenge is therefore on to look for different ways to improve existing technology, particularly as sustainability starts to play a more important role. Using less energy is clearly going to be a core requirement. So what technologies has KMS been examining? “We’ve been doing analysis on a two-pass system; if you vary the performance of the seawater membrane, you can substantially reduce the pressure of the feedwater going to the first pass,” Koch indicates. “You then take the permeate that has a higher concentration of salt and feed it to a brackish water system. Depending on how you configure

KMS’S LARGE-DIAMETER MEGAMAGNUM ELEMENT • Pressure vessel that houses 18-inch diameter, 60-inch length element • The active membrane area has been increased by 12% to 3,500 square feet • The housing is made from a glass-reinforced epoxy, which is stronger than previous vessels • The new MegaMagnums will be available in Q1 2010

that, you can reduce the operating energy and, as a result, the cost.” KMS’ automated manufacturing line has been designed to create membranes that have a wide range of properties, from high rejection and high pressure to low rejection and low pressure. “We can then dial in the properties of the membrane that our mathematical model predicts will give us the lowest operating cost,” observes Koch. “Generally speaking, reverse osmosis (RO) systems will operate more economically of the purity of the raw water going into the system is improved, so we’re also in the final stages of

A more holistic approach to system design will provide greater cost effiiciencies.

December 2009

Utilities Middle East 15


INTERVIEW

developing an ultrafiltration (UF) system that can more economically purify that water.” While some observers have in the past claimed that RO technology may have reached its peak, Koch begs to differ. “I still think it’s possible to make up flat-sheet membranes that give you higher rejection with lower trans-membrane pressure – that would be wonderful,” he says. “Another area that I’m interested in is making seawater RO membranes out of hollow fibre, not flat sheet rolled into spirals.” With recent advances in the textile industry enabling fibres to be spun at immense speed, with hundreds of fibres simultaneously, Koch thinks the scope for development is significant. A major factor here is that the cost of hollow textile fibres per foot is much lower than it is for UF membrane applications. “It’s just an engineering problem to make composite RO membrane in a hollow-fibre geometry; I think it ought to be possible to spin these RO hollow fibres at high speed and with great numbers simultaneously to gain a higher consistency and therefore a higher rejection,” the KMS president states. “That, I think, is the next great challenge in the membrane business.” But KMS doesn’t see the drive for new technologies ending with just changes to the membrane. A holistic approach to system design, fouling and pretreatment, and all the other variables that play a role in the membrane process, is likely to provide the best options, in terms of capital cost, to the end-user.

16 Utilities Middle East

“There are still tremendous opportunities in the membrane bioreactor (MBR) area and all sorts of engineering modifications that can reduce the capital cost of MBR cartridges,” Koch explains. “We also have lots of ideas about reducing the amount of air used

December 2009

David Koch and the KMS MegaMagnum large-diameter element..

to scour the fouling off the membrane. We’re a long way from having optimisation of all the variables that go into the MBR field, which is probably the most under-developed area in RO desalination.” Koch also says that the biggest improvement on the UF side is the potential use of a fibre reinforced with a braid enabling it to be super-strong, thus solving breakage problems. As the industry has grown, it has come in from some strong criticism

from environmentalists about its effects on marine life and the harmful effects caused by brine discharge into the oceans. But Koch, like other company executives at IDA, is unequivocal in his assertion that the sector is doing its best to counter these accusations. “Modelling studies have shown that concentrated salt is very rapidly dissipated – if you go out a hundred metres away from the discharge pipe, salt concentration is reduced to the levels

“Another area that I’m interested in is making seawater RO membranes out of hollow fibre, not flat sheet rolled into spirals” seen in the general body of the sea,” he argues. “I think it’s an inaccurate criticism and we need to use facts and data to disprove that as a serious concern. Long term, the general public will come to realise that that’s a criticism without any merit.” Another major issue that is affecting the Middle East is that of privatisation, and Koch remains a strong advocate of the process as providing the greatest competitive benefits to the end-user. “The way it ought to work is that investment groups and companies like ours should build the plants, operate them and then sell the water over the fence to the municipality or industry,” he continues. “The more plants you build, the better you can operate them, and the cheaper the cost you can deliver to the municipality or client.” Much of what Koch says highlights his appreciation of the value of cost to the client, and his confidence in the technologies that his company can provide. “I think the membranes have been proved to be theoretically the lowest-cost way to purify water,” he concludes. “And as the industry gets bigger and bigger and more people invest in development projects, the cost of the systems will continue to decrease.” www.utilities-me.com


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DSI - A Proactive Approach to Utilities & Infrastructure Drake & Scull International’s IWP operations create a win-win situation for both the client and the company itself by offering services to assist from conception through to delivery

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rake & Scull International PJSC (DSI), a leading UAE-based end-to-end service provider of mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) contracting, infrastructure, water and power (IWP) and civil contracting services, is undertaking a new strategy to assist developers in the design and early stages of projects. Through its IWP operations, DSI has become a local pioneer for the design and build of district cooling units; sewage treatment plants; water treatment systems and projects infrastructure. It is now offering a consultancy service to assist developers from the outset, helping to plan and prepare for all the requirements of development – from conception, through to delivery. Under the new format DSI IWP is working with the client to develop the best way forward for all the project infrastructure and utilities need . “We’re providing a proactive approach to the construction phase of a project, which creates a win-win situation for both our clients and ourselves,” says JBR District Cooling Piping Culvert (under the Marina Channel) DSI Executive Director of IWP, Tawfiq Abu Soud. “We are investing in value engineering and adviDSI was awarded its first IWP contract in 2004, second largest in the world, after the JBR district sory services which aid the client from the begin- in the form of the largest District Cooling Scheme Cooling Scheme, at its time; therefore the buildning, providing all solutions for the infrastructure in the world at the time - the creation of the AED up of the project needed the highest level of comand utilities of a project.” 300 million Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR) Dis- petence and experience. Since these two initial projects, DSI has DSI’s IWP operations provide for detailed study trict Cooling Scheme. The Contract required the of a project, so advisors work with the client to estab- highest level of attention from DSI, the design- expanded its IWP works into the MENA region and is again working on some of the largest lish the best way forward covering design, techand most important district cooling projects nical, commercial and financial considerations. “WE’RE PROVIDING A PROACTIVE in the region, while continuing to expand its The company is currently working on a expertise and knowledge of the industry. number of projects under this new format, APPROACH TO THE CONSTRUCTION “DSI is in the process of developing new including a project in Dubai, where DSI IWP is PHASE OF A PROJECT, WHICH CREATES schemes to use renewable energy sources to working with the client and consultants to establish a central cooling plant. A WIN-WIN SITUATION FOR BOTH OUR supply district cooling units with the necessary power,” Abu Soud says. “As an estimate, In the first half of 2009, the company’s MEP CLIENTS AND OURSELVES,” over 60 percent of the total power consumed works constituted 56% of all business; civil within the GCC is for environmental condiengineering 25% and IWP 19%. However, as DSI moves forward, it will shift its focus from MEP and-build contractor, in order to finish the proj- tioning. District cooling can help to change that to IWP operations, as these services and skills are ect on time and to meet the expectations of the ratio and allow for more efficient utilization of the power network.” currently in more demand in the region. IWP is not client. “There is always room for improvement and we labour intensive which means we can easily move to Again in 2004, DSI was awarded its second this area. Also, because DSI works on an EPC (engi- contract - the AED 440 million District Cooling at DSI are well aware of the responsibility placed neering, procurement and construction) basis, the scheme for Dubai Festival City (DFC). The DFC upon us to safeguard the environment and prooperational margins are relatively high. District Cooling plant was considered to be the vide commercially viable solutions.” www.utilities-me.com

November 2009

Utilities Middle East 21


NORTH AFRICA FOCUS

Unlocking

Libya

Software giant IFS is understandably proud of its association with state infrastructure firm GECOL

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ny roll-out of an ERP solution is a tough proposition. But when you’re implementing a country’s first ever ERP product, and the client is one of that country’s largest employers, the problems can start to stack up even further. The fact that the country in question is Libya might be enough to convince many players that the task was beyond them. Not so

IFS, which celebrated in October its long-running partnership with the state-run utilities giant in the North African nation, General Electricity Company of Libya, or GECOL. The relationship between the Libyan firm and IFS is undoubtedly a strong one; at a conference held in Tripoli, around 150 of Libya’s most prominent businessmen were in the audience to see first-hand a number of senior executives from both companies discuss the success of the

project. Presentations from the IFS team were made by company CEO Alastair Sorbie, CTO Dan Matthews and regional managing director for Africa, the Middle East and South Asia Ian Fleming, while on the GECOL side, chairman Abulgasem Uneas and IT project manager Hazem Zentani explained how the implementation had worked from their perspective. GECOL saw the requirement for a strong ERP provider in 2000 and spent the next three years defining specific needs. Among the challenges that the firm faced were an adherence to manual procedures, excessive paperwork and a host of variable legacy systems, none of which were integrated. Combined with Libya’s large size, the end-result was a dissatisfied customer base and delays in book closing. IFS quickly saw that this was an ideal opportunity to gain a foothold in what is now a fast-expanding

IFS regional managing director Ian Fleming speaks to a packed crowd.

18 Utilities Middle East

December 2009

www.utilities-me.com


NORTH AFRICA FOCUS

market. “We carried out multiple presentations in-country, and I visited Libya on an exploratory basis,” says Fleming. “Following on from that, we sent experts from our utilities industry team in Scandinavia to meet with GECOL, and we also arranged a reciprocal visit so that GECOL representatives could take a look at our utilities reference customers in Sweden.” A major challenge initially was to provide a consulting team that could operate in-country. IFS brought in staff from locations such as Johannesburg, Poland and Scandinavia, with the project being managed

from Dubai. But other challenges manifested themselves as time progressed. “Any time you go into a new country, you have to appreciate that there will be unknowns and that there is going to be a steep learning curve,” explains Fleming. “We spent a lot of time with the GECOL team in-country looking for peculiarities, localisations that were particularly unusual.” One of those requirements was the need for a pricing simulation and modelling capability to allow GECOL to determine the optimum future pricing bands or tariffs based on both historical and current data. Another requirement was for

“Any time you go into a new country, you have to accept that there will be some unknowns and a steep learning curve”

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Arabic-language software; although IFS provides this as standard, the product supplied to GECOL needed to take into account the nuances of the local dialect. “The fact that we were going into a country where there was no knowledge of ERP was also tough,” adds Fleming. “But a lot of people on the GECOL side had been involved in the evaluation process and were absolutely dedicated to the project. The push came right from the top of the company and the ethos to succeed flowed right through.” On the GECOL side, there were other obstacles to overcome. “We had three major challenges to cope with as a result of this implantation,” says Mohamed Ali Madi, GECOL’s technical support manager on the ERP project. “There was the data trail, end-user preparation and the building out of the infrastructure network. IFS helped us with our data cleansing and qualification strategy, and also with the migration to the system and our end-user training.” IFS also recommended a phased roll-out of the system, another factor that contributed towards its success.

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Transmission Lines

“One of the key points was strong management on both sides, which certainly helped us a lot,” continues Madi. “We really started to see the benefits from day one, which is when we took overall control of the decision-making process.” A watchword for both companies was training, both on and off-site. This was set up to hammer home a detailed understanding of the system and ensure that it was used after the ‘go-live’. For IFS, it was crucial that even those employees at the lower reaches at the GECOL organisation understood the implications of every item that was entered into the system. “The go-live was managed well, from our perspective,” says Fleming. “It can be tricky because there can be a reluctance – on the part of any firm, not just GECOL – to go live as companies then have to accept they are fully responsible for what’s happening. The reality is that for any ERP implementation, the partnership continues for a longer time thereafter.” In total, there are now around 3,000 named users for GECOL’s ERP, out of a total 37,000 employees.

December 2009

Utilities Middle East 19


NORTH AFRICA FOCUS The component-based structure of the IFS ERP means that different products are still being added to the GECOL portfolio some four years on. The firm has augmented the initial roll-out with IFS’ Project Management, Maintenance and Business Performance components. During the Tripoli conference, GECOL listed a number of ‘lessons learnt’, which was of particular interest to the assembled delegates. The utility recommended full and continuous support from senior management, the establishing of a well-prepared support organisation, transparent information exchange and

the selection of a qualified and committed project team as being the major tools for success. So where does the partnership go from here? Both parties are keen to continue, particularly as IFS rolls out its new user interface, Enterprise Explorer, which will be available next year. “In terms of where we going now, we are constantly providing new products that GECOL will evaluate and determine whether they are relevant to its requirements,” Fleming observes. “What we’re focusing on right now is the key performance indicator information that is provided to the top man-

agement of the company. The tariff addition has been another important step; tariff computations and simulation models are not part of standard ERP functionality, but it made sense to work with GECOL on this as it’s tightly integrated with the rest of its system.” For Fleming, the conference was a benchmark for the future of ERP in the country. “Some of the questions that the meeting sought to answer were critical to the success of similar roll-outs in Libya,” he explains. “Among these questions were: did the go-live occur on time, was the project completed within the initial

GECOL chairman Abulgasem Uneas (centre) alongside IFS CEO Alastair Sorbie (right).

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budget and was GECOL happy with the end results? One of the great things about the conference from our perspective was that GECOL gave a positive response to each of these questions to the audience.” Theoretically speaking, the GECOL success story should lead to other companies opting to take the ERP route. But Fleming also has a quick word of warning. “There’s still a lot of education required about ERP – some companies think they need a solution without really knowing what the technology is all about, and this is not just in Libya,” he says. One of IFS’ next steps is to establish an education programme in-country that will help people understand why ERP systems are implemented. “So far, we’re still on same track, we understand each other and we have a lot of respect for their recommendations,” concludes Madi. “We are planning to implement more IFS products as well, now that we have an ERP solution. We definitely see our future with IFS.”

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20 Utilities Middle East

December 2009

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DESALINATION FOCUS

Who was at

IDA 2009

?

Dow Water & Process Solutions GM Ian Barbour reveals which technologies his company is now exploring

O

ptimising performance is the phrase of the day for Dow Water & Process Solutions (DW&PS), which sees the meteoric rise of membrane technology as a great opportunity to garner greater market share. The company is already very active in the Middle East and is particularly proud of its participation in the Shoaiba Barge project, the largest desalination plant in the world (see box on this page).

As part of its drive to improve its research and development into the unique challenges of the local desal market, Dow recently announced an investment into the King Abdullah University of SciTechnology ence and Te (KAUST) in Riyadh. Part of that research will involve tweaking properties of the the properti with differmembrane w chemistries. “We’ll ent chemistri rolling capabilalso have rollin ities to look at changing the dimensions and configurations of the element itself, to make it more mo suited

“We’re looking at pre-treatment so we can see the effects of ultrafiltration on different water qualities around the world”

to the Middle East’s particular water quality,” says DW&PS general manager Ian Barbour. “We’re also looking at pre-treatment so we can see the effects of ultrafiltration (UF) on different water qualities.” Barbour explains that customers tend to look at the various water

SHOAIBA BARGE: FAST FACTS The largest sea-based desalination plant in the world Dow Water & Process Solutions general manager Ian Barbour.

Membranes: FILMTEC SW30HRLE-400i and FILMTEC BW30-440i Two-pass design Quantity: 5,656 (8-inch elements) Capacity: 52,000 m³/day OEM: WETICO Saudi Berkefeld

technologies – pre-treatment, UF and desalination – separately, but that the plan right now is to integrate those technologies to drive the cost of water lower. “For example, if we know the kind of water quality we’re getting from our pretreatment, we can change the configuration of the reverse osmosis (RO) membrane allowing us to use a thinner feed space, for example,” he remarks. “If the fouling potential has dropped because of the quality of the pre-treatment, using a thinner feed spacer allows you to put more membrane into the canister, which gives you more surface area and more productivity.” DW&PS has expertise in four fundamental water technologies – UF membranes, RO membranes, nanofiltration (NF) membranes and ion exchange membranes. “Our customers build the actual system, but they require multiple technologies so we’re trying to build up a portfolio,” Barbour states. “Each of our products are world-class in their own right, but we’re trying to work

December 2009

Utilities Middle East 21


DESALINATION FOCUS

out how they can be used together and understand their interactions.” In terms of new technologies that would rework the way the water industry sees desalination, Barbour doesn’t see a ‘magic bullet’ on the horizon. “If we could disrupt our own technologies to drive the cost of water down, we’d do it,” he says. “But generally, what you’ll see in the future is added growth of large-diameter modules, improvements in flow and flux due to polymer chemistry, and improvements to the membrane itself.” The Dow executive says that many technologies are being discussed, such as biological cell-type filtration, but that a new disruptive technology within the next five-10 years is unlikely.

In wider terms, Barbour says that the issue of wastage remains a key issue and claims that there are three solutions. “One is to use less, another is to reuse water - which is a massive issue right now - and the third is to develop new water sources, because in some cases, we are removing water from our aquifers, using it inefficiently and then just flushing it into the ocean.”

DOW IN THE NEWS Dow launches four new FILMTEC elements Dow opens R&D centre at Saudi university www.utilities-me.com

“What you’ll see in the future is the growth of large-diameter modules”

In tandem, the industry has to answer its critics on the environmental side. “Perth [the Southern Seawater Desalination Plant, which uses Dow elements] is a fantastic example of doing it right,” explains Barbour. “They had a lot of environmental activism, and used underwater cameras and other technologies to examine the issue of brine discharge and its impacts. Furthermore, the energy used in that plant

is sustainable, as the power is offset by building a wind farm.” But solving the world’s water problems is not something seawater desalination alone can achieve, and Barbour believes it would be irresponsible to say that it could. The next move is to clean wastewater to the point where it is potable, as is the case in the US and Europe, for example, but the Middle East is still behind in this respect.

Singapore International Water Week (SIWW) SIWW managing director Michael Toh assesses one of the biggest events in the industry’s calendar How has SIWW progressed in recent years? As a global platform for water solutions, the event first started as a project undertaken by the national water agency of Singapore, Public Utilities Board, as well as the ministry of environment and water resources. It was organised with the intention of bringing the who’s who of water industry to Singapore. It’s an annual event, and we’ve had two shows, which were both very successful due to the support we have had from various partners, including IDA, for which we are thankful. What sort of attendance figures have you registered? For the first show, we had 8,500 people from 79 countries, and in 2009 - in spite of H1N1 and the economic crisis, we had more than 10,000 people from 82 countries.

22 Utilities Middle East

We are certainly ly happy with how the show is developing eveloping and it is turning out to be a mustattend event for or the global water industry.. Moving forward, we’re working rking hard to improve content nt and deliveries, with much more networking, and hopefully fully many more deals. A testament ment to our success has been the he nominations for the e Lee Kuan Yew Water Prize, which is one of the highlights hts of the week. In 2009, we had 39 nominations forr the prize; this year, we have more than 50 nominations from a total of 32 countries.

December 2009

Singapore Water Week managing director Michael Toh.

What can Singapore share with regions such as the GCC? Although we are a small country – an island state - I think what we can really share is our holistic approach to treating water. We treat every drop as precious – in fact some people say we are treating the issue with a lot of paranoia. We’re just taking care of our resources, and we have an integrated way of managing our system, right from the collection of the rain, to the treatment, distribution, and even the education of the end-user. At the same time, when water is discharged, we’ve put a lot of effort into recycling, because that’s the way forward. Water to us is essential. When we gained independence we had to ensure the security of our water supply. So over time we have turned a disadvantage to a strength that we can share with the rest of the world.

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DESALINATION FOCUS

GE Water & Process Technologies The US giant explains why pre-treatment is so critical to the success of RO

A

s an attendee at IDA conferences over the last 20 years, Upen Bharwada can track better than most the shifting trends in the worldwide desalination market. As executive – business general manager, filters and membranes, at GE Water & Process Technologies, Bharwada is at the forefront of the sector’s evolution. So what are the technologies that are driving the market today? “I sense that there has been an ‘a-ha’ moment at IDA this week,” the GE executive says. “Whereas the real estate industry has the phrase ‘location, location, location’, this sector is recognising that the secret to managing seawater reverse osmosis (RO) as a unit process that delivers what it promises relies on the phrase ‘pretreatment, pre-treatment, pre-treatment’.

All of the challenges associated with making an RO membrane work are traced back or are endemic in the pre-treatment process.” Bharwada adds that there were two particular sessions during the course of the week that particularly caught his eye. One was on seawater intakes, which covered the mechanical technologies that assist with the understanding of micro-organisms, location of intake points and analysis of marine life. Another was a session on pre-treatment for seawater RO ultrafiltration (UF) technology, which discussed the understanding of total organic carbon (TOC), turbidity of bacteria and other kinds of submicron organisms, which he believes will go a long way towards making UF the preeminent treatment technology.

With regard to GE’s own technologies, the emphasis appears to be on integration. “What we’ve done is take our UF technology and integrated it with RO, all in one unified design,” says Ralph Exton, GE Water & Process Technologies global sales executive. “It’s a solution set that’s pre-engineered, predesigned and on one skid. In today’s market you often can’t wait 12-18 months for a seawater RO system, but we’ve got solutions that we can deliver in less than half that time

period. In some cases we have containerised systems that are on the shelf and ready to deploy.” “On the equipment front, a number of our pre-engineered systems allow for a shorter lead time, so from start to finish our clients can almost have a plug-and-play option,” continues Bharwada. “A truly integrated multi-unit process allows for a single control panel, one type of software and a true integration of synergies, and that’s what we’re introducing.” The expert

GE’S MIDDL MIDDLE EAST EXPERIENCE • GE helped build the Sulaibiya facility in Kuwait, the world’s membrane-based walargest membrane facility. This ter reclamation fa 375,000 m³/day (99 plant treats 375,0 municipal wastewaMIGD) of municip City and the ter from Kuwait C surrounding area. has provided • The company ha fleet of mobile w water treata fleet Al Tamimi ment systems to A rapid deployGroup for the rap treatment ment of onsite tre systems for b both sea water brackish water and brac treatment, water treatm reuse and water filtration with filtra

emergency response time of as little as 72 hours. • GE has supplied the International Medical Centre in Jeddah with an advanced membrane bioreactor wastewater treatment system to treat and recycle 250m³/day of wastewater, reducing freshwater usage. • GE supplied advanced reverse osmosis solutions for the Hamma Seawater Desalination Plant in Algeria to purify up to 200,000 cubic metres of seawater per day - providing as many as two million residents with a reliable and drought-proof supply of fresh water. The Sulaibiya reclamation facility in Kuwait.

Upen Bharwada, executive business general manager, filters and membranes.

24 Utilities Middle East

December 2009

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DESALINATION FOCUS

adds that for conventional older systems where the water chemistry has changed since the system was put in, GE has introduced cartridge filters that can assist when the pretreatment for conventional media filtration malfunctions. Lastly, the company is also introducing new chemicals into its analytical system portfolio. “So it’s not old wine and new bottles; we are either adding line extensions or delivering truly new products,” Bharwada says. The GE executive believes that some of the biggest opportunities in the desalination market currently reside within Saudi Arabia, and it’s clear that the firm has close ties with the Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC). “Saudi Arabia has been somewhat special if not unique

in its use and endorsement of hollow-fibre RO,” Bharwada observes. “Now, as the local industry evolves, they are using spiral-wound composite, an area in which GE is more active.” GE has also been working closely with the Tamimi Group, supplying a number of containerised seawater systems. “From a technological standpoint, I think Saudi Arabia is moving forward in accepting spiral-wound thin-film composite polymeride RO as the preferred method of desalination, either as a primary method or in the second pass,” Bharwada states. “So GE looks forward to working with SWCC and other components in the decision-making process as the country carries on evolving further.”

“The secret to seawater RO as a process unit that delivers what it promises is pretreatment, pre-treatment, pre-treatment”

Needless to say, big challenges lie ahead if the Gulf is to sustain what the GE executive refers to as its ‘economic miracle’. With locations like Abu Dhabi laying down ambitious markers to recycle 100% of its water by 2015, GE believes it has a huge role to play in the region. “This really plays well with our core competencies, so we look forward to working closely with Abu Dhabi’s

planning department to help them reach this goal,” remarks Bharwada, with some confidence. “GE has been the globally recognised leader with regard to membrane bioreactor (MBR) technology, for example. The technology we have features in the largest and the most successful installations, and it also provides the lowest lifecycle costs overall.”

Degremont CEO Remi Lantier is hoping to build on his firm’s long relationship in the Middle East What are your reasons for optimism with regard to the regional desalination market? Firstly, we are especially active in reverse osmosis (RO). Initially the thermal process was more active in the Gulf, but RO is relatively new in this segment. Our experience at the Fujairah IWPP proved that we could operate in very difficult water, and overall, I’m proud to say that plants built by Degremont worldwide are now providing more than a million cubic metres of desalinated water a day. What’s your histor y in the region? We have three major achievements here. Firstly, there’s Fujairah 1, which was the largest seawater RO plant on the planet when it was built. In addition, the Barka II plant is under commissioning, and that facility will eliminate or mitigate

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Degremont CEO Remi Lantier.

certain environmental elements in terms of discharge. Lastly there’s the Al Dur IWPP, which is the biggest seawater RO plant in the Gulf. It’s a challenge for Degremont, but

we’re very much looking forward to meeting the needs of the Bahraini community.

print. Therefore, it’s clear that energy consumption should be as low as possible.

What challenges does the desalination industr y face? You have to be able to match technologies of a very different nature. If we start from the beginning of the treatment chain, pre-treatment is crucial and there are a number of different processes, including dual-media filters, membranes, dissolved air flotation systems for all types of water. We’ve also mastered the RO process, so we can adapt the best products of several large suppliers of RO membranes to suit client needs, and last but not least, the energy recovery products are hugely important. Even if here the cost of energy is not as high as other parts of the world, it’s incumbent on the client to have a minimal carbon emission foot-

How important is sustainability to your company? It’s absolutely central to us. We want to bring to the client exactly what they want in terms of processes, guarantees and competitiveness, but we need to support the client on the sustainable side as well. Why? Because our clients are communities – ministers, states, municipalities, and so – all of which have a responsibility towards their citizens. We can also provide a long-term guarantees for these processes as we are also an operator, not just a builder, of these systems. Even if the client doesn’t want us to operate the system we build, the fact that we carry out operating work all over the world is proof of our experience.

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Utilities Middle East 25


DESALINATION FOCUS

Veolia seals partnership with NanoH20 Utilities Middle East caught up with both CEOs to discuss the benefits of a landmark new relationship between the two companies Can you explain what NanoH2O is of fering to the desalination market? Jef f Green (CEO of NanoH2O): NanoH2O is an early-stage developer of the next generation of reverse osmosis (RO) membranes. As a new company, it’s important for us to establish ourselves and we’re very close to our first commercial product so it’s an important time for us. How did NanoH2O first come to your attention? Jean-Michel Herrewyn (CEO of Veolia Solutions & Technologies): Actually, the initial contact was made through an IDA event in Barcelona two years back. At that time they presented their ideas and research and we thought that it was a clever and interesting product and wanted to learn and discover more. It evolved until the point where we formed the basis of a business relationship to meld the strengths of the two companies. It’s a great example of the kind of arrangements an event like this can produce. How important is the relationship from your perspective as a new company? JG: It’s absolutely critical. The most important thing for any new technology is to be demonstrated at a commercial level. You can present your research, but ultimately for customers like the municipalities and large-scale industry to adopt technology, they need to have seen the results in the field. As a smaller company, the question is how quickly can you achieve those results and

26 Utilities Middle East

once you do, what are the channels that will help you accelerate your sales. Veolia has that ability to move us quickly to the commercial testing phase. The water market is very local; different waters have different characteristics, so you need to have presence and testing in a number of different geographies. Can you provide further details about your first commercial product? JG: It’s a nano-composite seawater RO membrane. RO membranes are typically made of a pure polymer film - we add nano particles to the film that makes up the surface of the membrane. The key performance metrics for membranes are productivity - so in desalination you have pressure, which equates to energy consumption and which drives water through the membrane. The more permeable the membrane, the greater the opportunity to either drop the consumption by dropping pressure, or produce more water in a similarsized plant. Ultimately, that’s what we’re trying to do – the focus of our company has been to improve the membrane chemistry to get it to that next level of economics, which is going to benefit the enduser immeasurably.

December 2009

What does the relationship of fer Veolia? J-MH: There is a lot of merit for us to be involved as much as we can with the innovation associated with this kind of product. Even if the traditional membranes have become commodities, it doesn’t mean that there is no possible breakthrough in this technology that will change the economics of the whole sector. We are keen to find partners and promote the technologies, and then of course we can benefit in terms of market share and our own efficiency in the market. It’s often difficult for a sizeable company to ensure that everyone is openminded about new technologies being developed outside the firm. So looking at new partnerships helps fuel the general idea that we don’t rely on our role and process expertise - we can be flexible and adaptive to co-opt with others and deliver more. Some believe that the size of the company is an asset which should not be shared with others. I tend to believe the opposite - that the main issue is how reactive and quick you are to promote new ideas. This is especially valid in the water industry, which in my humble opinion has been a little lag-

“Our partnership is a great example of the kind of arrangements an event like IDA World Congress can produce”

ging behind in the efficiency with which it promotes new technologies in the marketplace. How does your technology assist with sustainability? JG: When you look at water treatment in general, there are three driving factors that affect sustainability. There’s energy consumption, materials consumption of building plants and materials, and the chemicals use in a lot of these processes. For membrane processes, we can help with all three. If you have a more productive membrane you can build smaller plants and get the same amount of water. And in any membrane or filtration environment, you’re going to have potential fouling on a membrane surface. A lot of the chemical feeds in the process are to do with fouling - if you can make a more naturally fouling-resistant surface, you can reduce chemical consumption and control that into the effluent and disposal.

Jean-Michel Herrewyn says that Veolia benefits from technologies developed elsewhere.

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DESALINATION FOCUS

Heavy duty locator

Acciona Agua MD Luis Castilla is trying to break into the Middle Eastern market What can you of fer the local market? We are a global solutions provider – we have expertise in finance, and we have also capabilities to design in-house, to build and to operate, so we cover the whole cycle. We can participate in many projects. On the technology side, we employ around 30 people in a research facility in Spain, concentrating on membranes. How important is the Middle East to you? We’ve had a presence here for two years, but we’re still waiting for our first major project. We were selected several times as a preferred bidder in several developments but because of the crisis and the rethinking of plant sizes, we haven’t signed anything yet. But I have full confidence that this market will invest with us. We have a huge presence in Southern Europe and the Americas, and we’re working on a giant desalination plant in the Thames Estuary in the UK. What projects are you bidding on at the moment? The Muharraq STP development in Bahrain and we will also see what we can do in Ras Al Zour. The past year has been very calm, but the opportunities are starting to come little by little. We’ve also been working very hard to win the bid for the desalination plant at Emaar’s King Abdullah Economic City.

Benefits: Sustainability is a core part of Acciona Agua’s offering, says MD Luis Castilla

Are you looking at prospective partners in the Middle East region? We don’t want to establish a global agreement in the area with one company. What we would like to do is team up with specific partners for every occasion. We are new in the market and need to get a better idea of who’s who in the local sector. So it’s necessary to establish strategic partners.

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How important are ‘green’ issues to your firm? Sustainability is our core message. Acciona is a family-owned company with more than 100 years of experience. Our current chairman joined six years ago and made a tremendous change to our strategy. He decided to enter the water sector in a big way and reposition the rest of the business to focus on renewable energies and new forms of construction.

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December 2009

Utilities Middle East 27


DESALINATION FOCUS

Metito Managing director Fady Juez has just been elected to the IDA board Congratulations on your appointment. What does this mean for Metito? Thank you. From the date that IDA was established, we were a founding member - Metito has been in this business for 50 years. I’m now in a position to give back some time and effort to the desal community. On the other hand, IDA is all about promoting the benefits of desalination to the general populace. So it’s a bit of CSR on the one side, but it also enhances the Fady Juez business of explains the desalination benefits of efficiency. on the other .

What are the biggest issues affecting the industry? The desalination world generally has been looking at various ways to reduce cost, reduce footprint, increase capacity, improve quality, reduce environmental effects and reduce power consumption per cubic metre. During this week, we had more than 1,300 worldwide delegates present and it has been a great opportunity for stakeholders to talk together. There are some massive projects being commissioned in Saudi Arabia and in North Africa, for example. What’s your assessment of the maturity of this technology? There’s still a lot of mileage left. Manufacturers are increasing the size and diameter of the membrane and increasing efficiencies hugely. Efficency is a core part of our strategy and I’m proud to say we’re one of a very few firms that produces an annual sustainability report.

Aquatech Business development manager Vikrant Sarin wants tighter rules What are your plans for the Middle East market? We’re here to gain exposure in this important sector; despite having more than 40 installations globally, we are yet to fully penetrate this market. We’ve had an office in Sharjah for the last three years, and we’re interacting with end-users in the other GCC countries. Recycling or effective water management is vital, and it’s an area where we’ve done a lot of work. What advice are you giving to local governments? Of course, we have to go towards zero-liquid discharge, but how do we proceed? There are a lot of technologies available, and there are also cheaper technologies coming up. The guidelines are there and these can be improved, but enforcement has to come from the government. So we are con-

stantly trying to build up awareness, and to that end we’ve created the Aquatech Recycle Reuse Association. We will be circulating newsletters and our membership will include ministers, university experts and other people involved in this industry. How close is the Middle East to zero-discharge? Of course the technology is in place to implement this, but the region has to move first, and the rules es need to be tighter. ter. There needs to be an end to subsidised water.

inge watertechnologies AG CEO Bruno Steis says UF technology is still at an early rly stage What do you of fer the local market? We are a UF component supplier; we sell modules and subsystems to systems integrators. UF as a pre-treatment for RO will be the key technology of the future. What projects are you working on in the region? If you look at UF, there are several applications for us: municipal and

28 Utilities Middle East

industrial water treatment, and pre-treatment for seawater RO desalination. Our largest project for seawater RO pre-treatment is at an Abu Dhabi plant. What’s your latest product to hit the market? We recently announced a newgeneration product that offers 30% higher permeability. By optimising the membrane geome-

December 2009

try, we have increased the he capacity of our standard models els without changing the size. UF technology is still only 15 years old. You also have many players ers in the market and it’s a race ce to decide which will be the market leader of the future - there are going Bruno Steis says that the to be two or three comopportunities in the UF panies that really make arena are still massive. money out of this.

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NEW TECHNOLOGIES

Smart meter roll-outs are taking place across the UAE. But what are the benefits of engaging with the new ‘smart ecosystem’?

R

Landis+Gyr says the E450 meter family offers ‘bestin-class solutions’.

Billing

ight now, the GCC is standing on the cusp of a ‘smart’ revolution. In some respects, the region is even further ahead than other competitor markets as it rolls out a selection of pilot smart metering programmes. While the numbers being deployed here may not be in the same league as in similar deployments in Europe and the US, the UAE, in particular, has been quick to see the benefits that new metering technology will provide both to utilities and the ultimate end-client – the consumer. While every GCC country is considering implementing regulations with regard to smart metering, the UAE has stolen a lead. Abu Dhabi has already started deploying a range of devices and Dubai will see its pilot programme become operational by April next year. Earlier this year, the Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (DEWA) ordered around 20,000 meters – 4,500 of which are being installed in the pilot phase and a full phased implementation is likely to occur based on the devices’ performance during the peak loads of next summer. Over the border in Saudi Arabia, the Kingdom has purchased its first tranche of smart meters, although it has not yet invested in the operating system. “At present legislation in the Middle East is in a nascent stage,”

me softly

30 Utilities Middle East

December 2009

says Rajiv Sawhney, Landis+Gyr’s CEO, Middle East. “However, there are directives that point towards protecting the environment and our natural resources, and improving energy efficiency; smart metering being a key enabler of this.” Sawhney believes that on the regulation front, a lot needs to be done to bring the Middle East up to speed in comparison to Europe. “A first step towards legislation would be the privatisation of the energy distribution sector,” he explains. “This would increase competition in the industry, optimise processes and bring into focus overall energy management to enable the smart grid.” The Landis+Gyr executive believes that lowering the current electricity subsidies in the region would make the benefits of smart metering more apparent, and the organisation of supply and demand more significant. “Time-of-use applications, demand charges, power factor penalties and serious steps towards influencing consumer behaviour would need to be employed, thereby providing a stable and reliable power supply to consumers,” Sawhney argues. “By highlighting the benefits of smart metering we will be one step closer to privatisation and, in effect, smart metering legislation.” The major point that Sawhney alludes to here is the high subsidies dished out by local authorities for the benefit of the consumer. This problem is one that is only likely to change if painful decision-making is undertaken at a senior level on the one hand, and better education of the consumer or client is undertaken on the other.

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NEW TECHNOLOGIES

Of course, smart metering itself is only a small part of the puzzle. The full benefit of the technology can only really be realised via true inte integration on with the smart grid. “A critical piece of making smart energy gridss successful is expanding the concept ept throughout the power grid, from generation to distribution on and to metering at the consumer onsumer site,” says Mashood hood Ahmad, regional onal managing director ctor of network specialist ialist Ciena Corporation, tion, which launched ched local operationss in November via the he opening of

“Our R&D teams work towards interoperability to bring the benefit of choice to regional regi utilities” Ciena Corporation regional MD Mashood Ahmad.

an office in Abu Dhabi. “Through emerging technologies such as line conditioning, energy storage and advanced metering, demand can be better matched with generation.” “Based on the variety of local conditions as well as the type of end users, multiple technologies are likely required,” explains Olivier Laborie, general manager Middle

East and India, Electricity, at Itron International. “Itron’s open and flexible systems can accommodate any type of installation, as well as the specific environmental and regulatory conditions.” Itron’s approach is to adapt and try and use the best method that is tailored to the specific terrain of the local environment. “Moreover, in order to ensure a reliable and economical overall solution for the utility for electricity and water meter data collection. Itron can offer a combination of communication technologies, such as GPRS, PLC, or RF (between meter and concentrator) and GPRS (between concentrator and collection engine).”

How to get the best out of billing ista Middle East managing director Tarek El Far showcases the benefits of smart submetering What are you offering the utilities industry? We are a global leader in consumption-based billing, which focuses on the client paying only for the energy that they consume. In the Middle East, the energy provider provides the energy in bulk to the building or the development and then the project owner has to collect back the money from the tenants. This is generally done by number of apartments or square feet, which is unfair. Our submetering solution measures the precise consumption of each unit and allocates costs accordingly. In addition, it also combines every commodity – water, chilled water, electricity and gas – into the one bill. We carry out the whole process, from designing the systems and supplying the hardware, to installing, testing commissioning and operating. What advice do you have for the utilities sector? In the UAE, we talk a lot about privatisation, which is growing in some

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areas. But I think there is still till room for improvement. I would strongly recommend any utility or energy provider to focus on their core ore business, and subcontract the secondary business – the reading and billing. By privatising, you get the cutting-edge technology and the cost is lower, so it provides benefi efits all the way through the chain. Can you provide de an example of a recentt major project? I’m happy to say we won the contract for the Burj Dubai. They needed a Tarek El Far is encouraging fully wireless system, and utilities to outsource reading our solution is fully tailorand billing to a third party. made. We have the ability to combine multiple energies, and there was no problem with installation and programming because it’s all remote. So there’s no need for readings – all the information is sent to our office and we e produce the bills. I’m very ry

Emaar chose us for this, proud that E something that I admit has which is som challenging – we spent a year been challen evaluating the project. and a half eva did you win this deal? Why d W The reason why we were picked was because of our radio frequency data concen concentrator. We’re the only company compan that produces bi-directional rection tools. Your usual wireless system involves wirele every meter looking for the nearest data concentrator to neare send the reading. We came up with something that would allow every meter wo to both send and receive information. This means in that every meter acts as th a repeater. So you only need one data concenne trator tra for every thousand metres. So if you are on m the first floor, you can put your you data concentrator on tthe 10th floor and the signal communicates via signa the other oth meters.

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Utilities Middle East 31


NEW TECHNOLOGIES

“It is likely that future technology will be similar to that in Europe and will use PLC, GPRS and Ethernet communication technologies,” agrees Sawhney. One of the fears from the utilities’ perspective has been that the varying types of technology, components and ‘options’ used by different manufacturers might lead to communications failures and a breakdown in the system. It’s fair to say that the manufacturers are keen to stress that they are working hard to combat this issue, and the term ‘interoperability’ is becoming something of a buzzword. The current communications standards and protocols being used in the Middle East are based on the European IEC standard. While IEC does provide for a certain number of characteristics and functions, it’s possible to achieve those characteristics and functions by using different components. The result is that while there may be a selection of meters that are technically compliant to the correct standard, they may not necessarily communicate with one another due to varying components or ‘options’. “Due to significant investments involved in the deployment of smart metering, utilities do not want to be locked to one technology, one vendor,” says Laborie. “They expect their systems to be open and interoperable, providing them with a choice of multiple vendors and permitting continuous technological evolution. For example, in Dubai, the local authorities are working with three manufacturers, whose products all need to work together.” Landis+Gyr’s Sawhney is in full agreement. “We are offering open, interoperable technology to the Middle Eastern market,” he says. “This is a major step forward in comparison to providing proprietary systems. Our research and development teams work towards interoperability to bring the benefit of choice to utilities and prepare them for the future of energy management.”

32 Utilities Middle East

“Utilities have to focus on managing the billing process in order for them to be able to save on costs” In a bit to combat this threat, Itron, Landis+Gyr and another manufacturing giant, Iskraemeco, are developing interoperability specifications in the context of a series of tendered projects, where interoperability was a pre-requisite. The plan is that interfaces on the three companies’ meters will allow customers to mix and match products from different suppliers. All three firms intend to make these interface specifications available to all parties willing to develop open and interoperable products, which will facilitate the creation of ‘a true interoperable environment for the future. This standard will be adopted by DEWA.

December 2009

But there are other challenges as well. “In the GCC, almost all of the utilities supply both water and electricity, therefore they are opting to roll out both water and electricity smart meters at the same time,” says Itron’s Laborie. “The constraints of the water meter, which has no power supply, require that the communication module operates on battery power, consuming as little energy as possible. The water meter communicates with the electricity meter, which sends the data of both meters to the collection system.” Laborie adds that one of Itron’s major advantages is the ability to supply all types of smart meters, and

related data collection and data management systems. “This is well illustrated by Itron’s recent contract to supply water, electricity, cooling and gas meters – all linked to one central system – in The Pearl Qatar development,” he indicates. Moreover, further difficulties lie ahead in the management of twoway flow for large data packets. As a result, local communication networks must be approved, especially for wireless technology. “Utilities must focus on managing the billing process in order to save costs,” explains Sawhney. “This can be achieved through connect and disconnect applications enabled by smart metering. The behaviour of those who consume large amounts of energy must also change to improve demand side management and meet energy efficiency goals.” The Landis+Gyr executive also believes that energy consumers will need to accept and participate in time-of-use tariffs to meet demand

Itron International’s regional general manager, Olivier Laborie.

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NEW TECHNOLOGIES

Finding the right software architecture Microsoft’s Jon Arnold explains the firm’s new SERA product Although the size of power systems and the number and needs of customers have grown exponentially, business and technology processes have remained essentially thee same, making the utility industry stry one of the last bastions ons of the analogue era. a. Faced with increased d consumer awareness, ss, changing requirements ments and new energy sustainability challenges, utilitilities around nd the world ld are trying ng

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to figure out how to bring their networks into the Digital Age. During the past 20 years one of the top pain points for a Utility CIO has been integration. The Microsoft Smart Reference Architecture Energy Refere the major (SERA) addresses addr business functions required fu for the smart sma energy ecosysincluding metering. It tem, includ the smart meter inteaddresses th processes to Utility cusgration proce tomer and distribution systems, meter data management, device “edge” agem connectivity as well as conn the ability to unlock the benefits of smart

metering by linking smart metering to home energy management applications that can influence consumer energy behavior patterns. By using SERA as a roadmap for metering deployments, Utilities will inject agility into their architectures so that as smart metering business processes change they will be able to adjust their solutions much quicker and without the pain and expense they have experienced in the past. While we may never get to a true “plug and play” environment, SERA puts Utilities on a path where they can focus on the business rather than being strangled by technology issues.

side management requirements at both domestic and industrial levels. The move towards smarter infrastructure and the role that the smart meter plays in that is inevitable. A quick glance overseas reveals that after an initial pilot test, France will roll out 35 million meters over five years, while Itron alone is currently deploying nearly five million smart meters and the associated system at SCE (Southern California Edison). There is a definite requirement for those utilities that are not yet already on board with this technology to embrace it, not only from a cost perspective, but also from the point of view of efficiencies, and more intelligent billing methods. While there is an initial outlay in terms of capex, any solution that brings such obvious benefits to the utilities and the consumer is a necessity, not an option.

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Utilities Middle East 33


DISTRICT COOLING FOCUS

The regulation argument DSI's Tawfiq Abu Soud says that a lack of legislation hurts the end-user With the economic crisis playing havoc with the local district cooling industry, many companies are starting to become more vocal about the ways they feel that regional authorities can assist the sector. One of the most strident calls for change has come from the wellknown Tawfiq Abu Soud. As executive director of Drake & Scull International (DSI)’s infrastructure, power and water operations, Abu Soud has masterminded the company’s emergence as an integrated utilities giant. DSI’s association with the district cooling business began in 2000, when it was awarded three projects within the space of a month in Dubai and Abu Dhabi. In 2003, the company carried out its first design-andbuild district cooling contract at the Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR), at the time the largest single plant in the world. “Since then, we’ve been expanding and developing to reach the stage we are at now,” explains Abu Soud. “We can provide advisors to assist clients on the best solutions, capacities and phasing, and we also conduct the construction on an open-book basis as well, so that we don’t take advantage of either the client or the end user.” One of the hottest topics in the industry most recently has been the issue of regulation, with most senior executives expounding the benefits a mandated set of guidelines would offer the sector. What is Abu Soud’s opinion on the issue? “I’m a big advocate of regulation, and I was very pleased that Dubai Municipality has said that each and every district cooling plant is required to have a thermal storage tank, and that the water being used should be treated sewage effluent,” he explains. “As www.utilities-me.com

DSI’S DISTRICT COOLING PROJECTS Hadeed District Cooling Project: Location: Saudi Client: Al Zamil Industrial Award date: Q1 08 Completion date: 2010 Wahat Al Khartoum District Cooling Project: Location: Khartoum, Sudan Client: Wahat al Khartoum Urban Development Company Start Date: Jan 2009 Durrat Al Bahrain District Cooling Plant: Location: Bahrain Award Date: 2009 Completion Date: 2013

drive the issue. At the end of the day, the lack of legislation impacts the end-user.” “For a utility provider, the main challenge is the occupancy rates in the development,” explains Abu Soud. “Because you have to cater for a 100% occupancy in any given p r o j ect, and what can

Tawfiq Abu Soud believes that more regulation is needed.

then happen is that you build a plant that you are not fully utilising. But you still need to recover your costs somehow, so you will be forced to recover the investment from the 40-50% occupants in the development, so the rates get higher.” Unoccupied apartments, shops and facilities are ‘dead assets’, according to Abu Soud, and it seems that there’s no easy fix to the conundrum. “It requires marketing and engineering to work hand in hand to determine the level of occupancy in each development and in each hotel. If you have apartments that are not occupied, that creates major problems.”

Meydan District Cooling Client: Meydan Start Date: Q1 08 Completion Date: 2009

you know, district cooling requires a lot of water, and if you’re using potable water, you’re putting a lot of strain on that network." As the DSI director points out, the availability of treated sewage effluent can be tricky in some locations, or at the right quantity. But it is clear that Abu Soud think that the local authorities need to do more to push regulation forwards. “This doesn’t work through talks, seminars and presentations, this works through mandates,” he argues. “They need to create a committee for this in order to December 2009

Utilities Middle East 35


PROJECTS

UTILITIES PROJECT TRACKER Information is supplied by Ventures Middle East. Tel: +971 2 622 2455. URL: www.ventures-uk.com MIDDLE EAST

Project Title

Client

Consultant

Main Contractor

Value / Value Range (US$. Mn)

Project Status

Project Type

SAUDI ARABIA

9023/9001 Underground Cables

Saudi Electricity Company

Al Fanar Contracting

46

under construction

Power Transmission

Shouaiba-2 Substation - Namera North Overhead Transmission Line

Saudi Electricity Company (SEC)

Not Appointed

106

EPC Bid

Power Transmission

Tabouk Power Plant

Saudi Electricity Company

Nespak

National Contracting Co.

114

project under construction

Power Plant

Desalination Plant in Jeddah Phase 3

Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC)

Kuljian Engineering Corporation

Doosan Heavy Industries/ Saudi Berkefeld Filter

245

project under construction

Desalination Plant

Al Laith Valley Dam

Ministry of Water and Electricity

RGME

Al Nammal Trading and Contracting Company

50

project under construction

Dam

132/13.8 kV 8122-Substation in Al Morooj

Saudi Electricity Company (SEC)

Al-Osais Group

50

project under construction

Substation

10J Substation & 101 Satellite Substation in Yanbu

Royal Commission for Jubail and Yanbu (RCJY)

Not Appointed

150

EPC Bid

Substation

Princess Noura Bin Abdulrahman University - High Voltage Substation

Ministry of Higher Education / Ministry of Finance

ABB Contracting Co. / Al Fanar Contracting

167

project under construction

Substation

Yanbu EPC

The Power & Water Utilities Company for Jubail & Yanbu (Marafiq)/Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC)

Not Appointed

4000

FEED

Power and Desalination Plant

132/13.8 kV 8155-Substation in Al Maather

Saudi Electricity Company (SEC)

Al Babtain Contracting

20

project under construction

Substation

110/13.8-kV Substation in Al Misfalah - 3

Saudi Electricity Company (SEC)

Saudi Services for Electro Mechanic Works Company

5

project under construction

Substation

380-kV Substation at Jubail 2

Saudi Electricity Company (SEC)

Cogelex Alstom S.A

148

under construction

Substation

Siemens

400

project under construction

Substation

Bin Jarallah Establishment for Trading & General Contracting (Bin Jarallah Group)

16

project under construction

Dam

ABB Contracting Co., Saudi Arabia

120

project under construction

Substation

Not Appointed

King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC) - Power Grid Package

Emaar Middle East Properties

New Dam in Abha

Ministry of Water and Electricity

Substations 9024 and 8183/8184

Saudi Electricity Company (SEC)

Mohammed A.Turki Mott MacDonald

Saudi Electricity Company (SEC)

Zuhair Fayez & Partners

Ras Al-Zour EPC

SWCC

3,000

EPC Bid

Power & Desal Plant

Tabouk Power Plant Expansion

Ministry of Water and Electricity

Fichtner

National Contracting Company Limited (NCC)

90

project under construction

Power Plant

Captive Power Plant in JEC

Saudi Binladin Group / CHALCO / MMC Corporation Berhad

CPI Power Engineer

2000

project under construction

Power Plant

480 MW Expansion of Jeddah PP3 - Stage 2

Saudi Electricity Company (SEC)

Not Appointed

250

project under study

Power Plant

PP11 Power Plant in Riyadh

Saudi Electricity Company (SEC)

Not Appointed

2133

EPC Bid

Power Plant

Rabigh IPP - Jeddah North Subsation OHTL

Saudi Electricity Company

MEEDCO

62

project under construction

Power Transmission

1200 MW Thermo-electric Power Plant in Rabigh

Saudi Electricity Company (SEC)/ACWA Power International/Kepco

Not Appointed

2500

project in its concept stage

Power Plant

Not Appointed

250

EPC Bid

Desalination Plant

EPC Bid

Power and Desalination Plant

UAE Desalination Plant in Jafza Hassyan Complex - Station P Phase 2(P2)

36 Utilities Middle East

Jafza/Palm Water

GHD

DEWA

Lahmeyer International

December 2009

Not Appointed

3000

www.utilities-me.com


PROJECTS

Fujairah 2 (F2) IWPP

ADWEA/ Marubeni Corporation/ International Power

Alstom Power / Sidem

3,000

project under construction

Power and Desalination Plant

Water Treatment Plant - Das Island

Abu Dhabi Marine Operating Company (Adma-Opco)

Metito Abu Dhabi LLC

21

project under construction

Water Treatment

Desalination Plant near Hamriyah Free Zone

Sharjah Electricity and Water Authority (SEWA)

Aqua Engineering, Techton Engineering & Construction

122

project under construction

Desalination Plant

General Utility Plant Expansion at Ruwais

Abu Dhabi Oil Refinery Company (Takreer)

Not Appointed

500

EPC Bid

Power Plant

Power and Desalination Complex-M Station

Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA)

Doosan / Fisia Italimplanti

2,693

project under construction

Power and Desalination Plant

Nuclear Power Plant in Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi Water and Electricity Authority / Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation

Not Appointed

41000

EPC Bid

Power and Desalination Plant

Installation of 11kV Cables

DEWA

Not Appointed

25

EPC Bid

Power Transmission

Five 132/11 kV & One 132/33 kV Substations in Dubai

Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA)

Emirates Trading Agency (ETA), Dubai

225

project under construction

Substation

Not Appointed

3,700

project under design

Power and Desalination Plant

Not Appointed

30

EPC Bid

Substation

Fichtner

Fichtner

KUWAIT Al Zour Power Plant Expansion

Ministry of Electricity & Water

New Substations in Kuwait

Ministry of Electricity & Water

Shuaiba Power & Desalination Plant

Ministry of Electricity & Water

Shuwaikh Desalination Plant Five 132/11 kV Substations at Jaber Al-Ahmed

Parsons Brinckerhoff

Parsons Brinckerhoff

Mitsui Company

1,300

under construction

Power and Desal Plant

Ministry of Electricity & Water

Doosan Heavy Industries & Construction Kuwait

320

project under construction

Desalination Plant

Ministry of Electricity & Water

Al Ahlia Switchgear Company

66

project under construction

Substation

QATAR Ras Laffan C Independent Water & Power Project

Kahramaa/Qatar Petroleum / Suez Energy International / Mitsui & Company

Kema

Mitsui & Company

3,700

project under construction

Power and Desalination Plant

Captive Power Plant at Mesaieed

Qatalum

Mott MacDonald

GE / Doosan Heavy Industries

1,000

project under construction

Power Plant

Mesaieed A - Power Project in MIC

QEWC/QP/Marubeni

Fichtner

Iberinco

2,000

under construction

Power Plant

OMAN Desalination Plant in the Duqm Area

Rural Areas Electricity Company

VA Tech Wabag

21

project under construction

Desalination Plant

Salalah IWPP

OPWP /Sembcorp Utilities Pte Ltd /Oman Investment Corporation

Shandong No.3 Electric Power Construction Corporation,China

750

project under construction

Power and Desalination Plant

Power Plant in the Duqm Area - Phase 2

Rural Areas Electricity Company

Global Chemicals & Maintenance Systems

44

project under construction

Power Plant

BAHRAIN Independent Water and Power Plant in Addur

Ministry of Finance / Ministry of Electricity & Water / Suez Energy International

Mott MacDonald

Degremont / Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI)

4000

project under construction

Power and Desalination Plant

Ten 220kV Substations

Ministry of Electricity & Water, Bahrain

Electricity Supply Board International- Ireland (ESBI)

Electricity Supply Board International- Ireland (ESBI)

105

project under construction

Substation

www.utilities-me.com

December 2009

Utilities Middle East 37


TENDERS

Tender activity To add a tender to our listing, email details to lutfi.qaraman@itp.com Visit constructionweekonline.com for the latest tender information

UME provides free access to the latest publicly available tender listings from across GCC countries. The tenders included are aggregated from a wide variety of public and private sector sources from across the region. Where possible, tenders include the issuer, name and category of the tender; opening and closing dates; narratives; fees, bonds and contacts

132-KV UNDERGROUND CABLES IN KUWAIT Issuer: Central Tenders Committee Tender no: MWE/98/2008/2009 Title: 132-kV Underground Cables in Several Areas Description: The scope of work includes the construction of 132-kV underground cables in several areas in Kuwait City. Bond: Applicable Tender fee: 2500.00 KWD Closes: Dec 6, 2009 Contact: Central Tenders Committee - Ministry of Electricity and Water SEA WATER PUMPING STATION-2 & RETURN SYSTEM IN OMAN Issuer: MAJIS INDUSTRIAL SERVICES S.A.O.C Tender number: 305/2009 Title: Sea Water Pumping Station-2 & Return System for Sohar Industrial Port Area Description: The scope of work includes construction of sea water pumping station-2 & return system for Sohar Industrial Port Area. Bond: Applicable Tender fee: 1500.00 OMR Closes: Dec 14, 2009 Contact: www.tenderboard.gov.om SUPPLY OF POWER TRANSFORMER IN OMAN Issuer: Muscat Electricity Distribution Co. (SAOC)

38 Utilities Middle East

December 2009

Tender no: 317/2009 Title:Supply of 20-MVA, 33/11.5kV Power Transformer Description:The scope of work includes supply of 20MVA, 33/11.5-kV power transformer, RTCC panels, 11-kV indoor switchgears, 30v DC battery with charger and 110-v DC battery with charger. Bond: N/A Tender fee: 150.00 OMR Closes: Dec 14, 2009 Contact:www.tenderboard.gov.om SEAWATER PUMPING STATION 2 AT SOHAR PORT Issuer: MAJIS INDUSTRIAL SERVICES S.A.O.C Tender no: 305/2009 Title: Sea Water Pumping Station-2 & Return System for Sohar Industrial Port Area Description: The scope of work includes construction of sea water pumping station-2 & return system for Sohar Industrial Port Area. Bond: Applicable Tender fee: 1500.00 OMR Closes: Dec 14, 2009 Contact: www.tenderboard.gov.om UPGRADING OF FIRE ALARM SYSTEM IN AL SHOUQAIQ SUBSTATION Issuer: Saline Water Conversion Corporation Tender no: SQ/RI/428 Title: Upgrading of Fire Alarm System in Al Shouqaiq

Substation, Saudi Arabia Description: The scope of work includes upgrading of fire alarm system in Al Shouqaiq Substation, in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Bond: N/A Tender fee: N/A Closes: Dec 15, 2009 Contact: www.swcc.gov.sa SUPPLY & REPLACEMENT OF HVAC SYSTEM IN SAUDI ARABIA Issuer: Saline Water Conversion Corporation Tender number: SH/R/E/079 Title: Supply & Replacement of HVAC System at Shoaiba Plant Phase-1 Description: The scope of work includes rehabilitation, supply & replacement of HVAC system at Shoaiba plant phase-1. Bond: N/A Tender fee: 500.00 SAR Closes: Dec 16, 2009 Contact: www.swcc.gov.sa CHLORINATION UNIT IN AL KHOUD RESERVOIR, SULTANATE OF OMAN Issuer: Public Authority for Electricity and Water Tender no: 324/2009 Title: Chlorination Unit in Al Khoud Reservoir Description: The scope of work includes construction of

www.utilities-me.com


TENDERS

chlorination unit in Al Khoud Reservoir. Bond: N/A Tender fee: 200.00 OMR Closes: Dec 28, 2009 Contact: |www.tenderboard.gov.om REFURBISHMENT WORKS IN OMAN Issuer: Al Ghubra Power & Desalination Company S.A.O.C Tender number: 330/2009 Title: Refurbishment Works on the Steel Structure at Al Ghubra Power and Desalination Plant Description: The scope of work includes refurbishment works on the steel structure at Al Ghubra Power and Desalination Plant. Bond: N/A Tender fee: 400.00 OMR Closes: Dec 28, 2009 Contact: http://www.tenderboard.gov.om REPLACING PORTIONS OF OHTL IN OMAN Issuer: Oman Electricity Transmission Company Tender no: 329/2009 Title: Replacing Portions of 220-kV and 132-kV OHTL in Muscat Governorate Description: The scope of work includes replacing portions of 220-kV and 132-kV overhead transmission lines (OHTL) in Muscat governorate with cables phase-1, part-3. Bond: N/A Tender fee: 1500.00 OMR Closes: Dec 28, 2009 Contact: http://www.tenderboard.gov.om WDC IN MINA ABDULLAH, PHASE 2 Issuer: Central Tenders Committee Tender no: MEW/58/2009/2010 Title: WDC in Mina Abdullah - Phase 2 Description: The scope of work includes construction of water distribution centre (WDC) in Mina Abdullah, Kuwait. Bond: Applicable

www.utilities-me.com

Tender fee: 4000.00 KWD Closes: Dec 27, 2009 Contact: Central Tenders Committee - Ministry of Electricity & Water AL-ZOUR DESAL PLANT, PHASE 2 KUWAIT Issuer: Ministry of Electricity and Water Tender no: MEW/39/2008/2009 Title: Al-Zour Desalination Plant - Phase 2 Description: The scope of work includes design, construction of Al-Zour desalination plant, phase 2. Bond: Applicable

KEY CONTRACT

WATER INTAKE AND OUTFALL SYSTEM PACKAGE IN DUBAI DEWA has issued a tender for a water intake and outfall system package at the Hassyan Power and Desalination Station. The scope of work includes construction of water intake channel (onshore and offshore sections), outfall System comprising and outfall chamber means of transporting the discharge offshore, boat house anf boat lifting facilities, and ancillary works, including roads and associated lighting. The tender number is CNE/0114/2008(R) and there is a tender fee of 5000 AED. This tender closes on January 25, 2010. Contact: The Chairman, Board of Directors, Dubai Electricity & Water Authority

Tender fee: 3000.00 KWD Closes: Dec 29, 2009 Contact: http://www.ctc.gov.kw BOILER REHABILITATION IN SAUDI ARABIA Issuer: Saline Water Conversion Corporation Tender no: SH/R/M/037 Title: Boiler Rehabilitation & Equipment Improvement in Saudi Arabia Description: The scope of work includes boiler rehabilitation & equipment improvement in Shoaiba Power and Desalaination Plant - Phase-1. Bond: N/A Tender fee: 500.00 SAR Closes: Dec 28, 2009 Contact: http://www.swcc.gov.sa CONSTRUCTION OF PUMP STATION IN BURIYDAH Issuer: Saline Water Conversion Corporation Tender no: N/A Title: Construction of Pump Station in Buriydah Description: The scope of work includes construction of a pump station in Buriydah, in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Bond: N/A Tender fee: 1000.00 SAR Closes: Dec 28, 2009 Contact: www.swcc.gov.sa UPGRADING OF COMPLETE SCADA SYSTEM IN SAUDI ARABIA Issuer: Saline Water Conversion Corporation Tender number: N/A Title:Upgrading of Complete SCADA System Description: The scope of work includes upgrading of complete SCADA system, communication system & communication Cable in RQWTS Lines A & B. Bond: N/A Tender fee: 5000.00 SAR Closes: Jan 3, 2010 Contact: www.swcc.gov.sa

December 2009

â—?

Utilities Middle East 39


QUICK Q&A

PEOPLE METER Power game ABB’s president and local business unit manager ager for substations in Saudi Arabia, Mohammed Samkari, talks about his firm’s latest projectss What work have you carried out on the GCC interconnection grid? We’ve built six main substations for the GCC grid – three in Saudi Arabia, and one each in Kuwait, Bahrain and Qatar. We are also the electrical package supplier for the seven substations at Shuwaihat in the United Arab Emirates. How will trading on the interconnection grid work? The peak demand period for all GCC countries occurs at around the same time. But the plan is to connect Saudi Arabia with Egypt and then eventually with Europe. It’s at that stage that we will start to benefit from the time difference and the change in peak demand. The idea here is to reduce the spinning reserve of each country and increase the stability of the grid, so each country can view the spinning reserve of other countries as being available to them. The trade in power will be calculated so that half of the capacity of the largest generating plant in each country will become available to its neighbours. How has ABB assisted with the construction of the Kingdom’s railway projects? Our role for the railway has two parts. The first part is the main

40 Utilities Middle East

power supply to the electrical railway. For the Haramain link, this will be through six 380kV substations – the locations of which have already been defined by SEC, and which will be financed by the railway authority. The other part is the traction system - one of our competencies - which will be 25kV. So we’re working on two projects simultaneously which requires expert coordination.

How do you see the utilities market in KSA developing in the future? We are expecting that the boom of 2007-8 will be repeated in Saudi Arabia. The Kingdom is an emerging market with a lot of demand and plenty of opportunity not only in new installations but in upgrading and increasing efficiency and availability in existing plants.

“We’ve built six main substations for the GCC interconnection grid in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain and Qatar” Can you provide some details about your latest contract win? We’ve just won the power supply contract to the prestigious Princess Nourah Bint Abdulrahman University on the outskirts of Riyadh. This US$120 million deal consists of one 380kV substation, two 132kV substations and expansion work at an existing substation. The delivery period is 20 months, so it’s a rush project, but we’re very excited about this prestigious deal.

December 2009

How are your relationships with other Saudi utilities? In Yanbu and Jubail, we have a lot of existing installations and we have excellent relationships with those utilities as well. We have also won a package from Sepco 3 for power transmission substations. For SWCC, normally we participate via large EPC contracts as a supplier or as a partner. We are already working with Ma’aden, and we’re looking forward to contributing to the Ras Al Zour EPC

project. On the distribution side, a lot our products are locally manufactured. Outside of KSA, in the rest of the GCC, we also enjoy excellent relations with our suppliers. We have the largest manufacturing facility in the region for transformers, switchgears, and automation systems. For example all the switchgears and panels in Burj Dubai are made by ABB. Will Saudi Arabia win the battle to keep up with demand in the long run? Absolutely. ABB is a long-term player and we’re constantly working to be ahead of the market to achieve success. The power sector is vital to this country, and whatever investment there may be in terms of infrastructure and investment, if there is no power supply for those projects then it’s a waste of time. But it’s not just about winning the big contracts; we are active when it comes to providing services related to our solutions portfolio. We are planning to sign some large service contracts with industrial clients and we are also active with regard to system efficiencies and improvement. There is no project that is too big or too small and we are here to fulfil the requirements of all our customers. www.utilities-me.com


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Utilities ME - Dec 2009