Egypt has partnered with Russia to build a plant that will manufacture components used by the seawater desalination industry, reports Afrik21. The Egyptian military complex will work together with a local university and Russia’s state-owned company Rusnano.
Egypt, located in an arid- to semi-arid zone, has embraced policies to support the use of non-conventional water resources. Specifically, last year it announced a plan to construct 47 desalination plants in the next five years.
Now the Egyptian government has decided to work jointly with Russia in a new endeavour: manufacture equipment for desalination plants in a new facility. A cooperation agreement has been signed between Russian company Rusnano, the Arab Organisation for Industrialisation (AOI), the engineering Authority of the Egyptian Armed Forces, and the University of Alexandria.
Abdel Moneim El-Terras, Chairman of the AOI, emphasised the importance of the collaborative effort: “With this cooperation, we aim to increase the manufacture of seawater desalination plant equipment and components with Egyptian national expertise”.
The partnership will support Egypt’s plans to rely on desalination for the drinking water supply. The coming years will see the construction of 19 new desalination plants by 2022, 47 by 2030, and 67 by 2050. Coastal cities will benefit from the water produced by the plants, including Nabq, Ras Sidr, Abou Zanima, Dahab, Nuieba, Arish 1, Arish 2, Arish 3, Arish 4, Sheikh Zowayed 1, Sheikh Zowayed 2, Sidi Barani expansions, western Port Said, Dabaa, Marina 1, Marina 2, Marbella, and New Mansoura.
Rusnano acts as a co-investor in nanotechnology projects across the world, and is also involved in the exploitation of non-conventional water sources such as seawater desalination. The Egyptian authorities will harness the expertise of Rusnano to build its water infrastructure, Egypt already works with Korean membrane manufacturer Sepratek in the production of desalination equipment, including technology transfer to local companies.