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Egypt plans to build 21 desalination plants worth $3 billion to boost water security

  • Egypt plans to build 21 desalination plants worth $3 billion to boost water security

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Egypt will award contracts next year to build 21 desalination plants, reports Arab News.

In an aim to boost the country’s water security, the CEO of Egypt’s sovereign fund said last week that the country plans to construct 21 desalination facilities in the first phase of a program worth US$3 billion that will draw on cheap renewable energy.

The new desalination program aims to generate 3.3 million cubic meters of water daily in the first phase, and eventually reach 8.8 million cubic meters daily at a cost of $8 billion.  Currently, the country faces an annual water deficit of about seven billion cubic meters and according to IPS, the country could run out of water by 2025, when it is estimated that 1.8 billion people worldwide will live in absolute water scarcity.  

Ayman Soliman revealed in the Reuters NEXT conference that the country wishes to start production at a series of proposed green hydrogen projects in 2025-2026 with an aim to boost lagging investment in renewables.

Soliman added that more than 200 developers from around 35 different countries had sent expressions of interest for the first phase of the project.

“This is not a competition. We are creating a pipeline or a blueprint for that process, aiming to start production in 2025-26 and all the developers are working backwards from there,” Soliman said.

The Sovereign Fund was created in 2018 to attract private investment in state-owned assets through partnerships and co-investments.

Soliman also revealed the signing of Memoranda of Understanding between the Egyptian government and several entities for the development of green hydrogen projects at the recently concluded COP27 event in Sharm-el-Sheikh.

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