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Oman awards $260mn Sohar IWP contract

Oman Power and Water Procurement Co (OPWP) has awarded a consortium led by Spanish firm Valoriza Agua with a contract to develop a $260mn water desalination project.

The Sohar Independent Water Project (IWP) – based on reverse-osmosis technology – will be one of the biggest water desalination projects in the Batinah North governorate, with a production capacity of 250,000 m3 per day when completed in 2018.

Oman Brunei Investment Co (OBIC) and Sogex Oman Co are also part of the consortium known as Myah Gulf Oman Desalination Co, which was named as the preferred bidder for the project last year. A consortium led by Japan’s Itochu Corporation was simultaneously named preferred bidder for a separate 280,000 m3/day desalination plant in nearby Barka.

Under the agreement, OPWP will have the right to buy the desalinated water produced at the Sohar plant for a period of 20 years. The project – which is expected to meet about 80 percent of water demand in fast growing Batinah North region – is totally financed by local banks – Muscat Bank and Oman Arab Bank.