Utico has announced investments of nearly AED 1.2 billion in new utilities projects across the UAE to meet the growing regional demand for water and power. The projects include a water transmission and storage project between Ras Al Khaimah and Sharjah and a state-of-the-art desalination facility to be set up in Ras Al Khaimah.
Work has commenced on the AED 410 million Ras Al Khaimah-Sharjah water transmission project, which can carry 50 million gallons of water either way and will have a final storage capacity of 100 million gallons once operational. This was announced by Utico, the region's largest independent utilities company.
The milestone project will be implemented in two phases and will be completed in 18 to 32 months with the pipeline operational in June 2017. Once deployed, the project will provide continuous water supply to more than one and half million residents in Sharjah and Ras Al Khaimah, working closely with the Sharjah Electricity and Water Authority (SEWA) and the Federal Electricity and Water Authority (FEWA).
In his statement, Richard Menezes, Utico's Managing Director, said that the project was in line with the innovation and sustainability guidelines pursued by the UAE government. "The remarkable growth of population in Ras Al Khaimah, Umm Al Quwain, Ajman and Sharjah puts an increasing demand for water, both for consumption as well as industrial purposes," he said. "Once the project is completed, it will supply uninterrupted water to the residents and companies in the two regions."
The project has been designed in an innovative and environmentally sustainable manner supporting climate change inhibition, with the transmission project focusing on water loss prevention and solar power being used for transmission and storage recirculation. The total power required for this project is 10MW.
The investment in the RAK-Sharjah water transmission and storage project is in addition to the AED719 million investment in the state-of-the-art water desalination project that Utico announced a few months ago. The company, called Al Hamra Water Company, is a joint venture with Spanish utilities leader Grupo Cobra. The 22-million-gallon capacity plant is being set up in Ras Al Khaimah and will be fully operational in 2018.
Menezes added that Utico was also on course to set up a 40MW solar power plant for which several bidders are vying for the IPP contract. The company stated that it intends to build over 100MIGD of desalination capacity in the coming 6 years with 50MIGD operational in 3 years.
Innovation and sustainability has been the foundation motto and soul of Utico from its inception and the core of its business model. With the UAE leadership advocating innovation and sustainability as the future of the country, Utico is poised to take this to the next level in innovative utilities development and sustainability.