FCC Aqualia signs contract to build the Abu Rawash treatment plant in Egypt

Posted: Friday 22nd September 2017

The contract, for $320 million, includes the design, building and operation of the Abu Rawash WWTP in Cairo (Egypt) and is the largest contract of this type that the company has undertaken abroad. The project will be delivered in collaboration with FCC Construccion.

The current economic situation in Egypt necessitated changing the agreement initially reached with the Egyptian government, which involved a 20 year concession.

The Abu Rawash plant, one of the largest WWTP's in the world, will treat 1.6 million cubic metres daily and serve more than six million people.

Hassan El Far, CAPW Chairman (Construction Authority for Potable Water and Wastewater), Luis de Lope, FCC Aqualia's International Director and Maged Abadir, Orascom Chief Operations Officer (the company which completes the consortium alongside FCC Aqualia) have signed the contract for the design, construction and maintenance of the Abu Rawash wastewater treatment plant in Cairo (Egypt). Once finished, the plant will treat 1.6 million cubic metres of water per day and will serve six million people, making it one of the largest in the world.

The signing took place at Prime Minister Sherif IsmaiI's office, who took charge of directing the ceremony. It was attended by Moustafa Madbouli, Ministry of Housing; Sahar Nasr, Ministry of International Cooperation; and Mohamed Kamal el Daly, Giza's Governor. Also present were Arturo Avello Diez del Corral, Spanish ambassador in Egypt, and Jose Octavio Tripp Villanueva, Mexican ambassador in Egypt, as well as Khaled El Degwy, Concessions Director of Orascom. Representatives of FCC Construccion, the company leading the delivery of the project, and representatives of the African Development Bank, the entity responsible of financing the operation, were also present.

The project, valued at US $320 million, was put out to tender by the Egyptian Ministry of Town Planning. It is a DBO (design, build and operate) contract that includes a three-year operation and maintenance period. Although the initial agreement with the Egyptian government included a concession for 20 years (including financing), the economic situation in Egypt made it advisable for the investment in the project to be assumed entirely by the Egyptian state, abandoning the original idea of a concession type contract.

The scope of the work includes the enlargement of the existing primary treatment plant from 1.2 million m3/day to 1.6 million m3//day and the addition of biological treatment.

The Abu Rawash contract is part of the ambitious programme for water and sewerage actions by the Government of Egypt and has the backing of the African Development Bank, a multilateral organisation the purpose of which is to finance development projects on the African continent.

This is the third major project undertaken by FCC Aqualia in Egypt after it was chosen in 2010 to design, build, finance and operate for 20 years the New Cairo wastewater treatment plant. Located in the capital of Egypt, this was the first contract awarded in the country as a public private partnership (PPP). The improvement of the sewerage and treatment services is one of the goals set by the United Nations in the Millennium Development Objectives (MDO) and the New Cairo plant was praised by the international organisation as "an example and engine for social development."

In 2016, the Egyptian Ministry of Defence awarded FCC Aqualia the project for the El Alamein desalination plant. Located on the Mediterranean coast in an area of growing tourist development, the plant will treat 150,000 m3/day.

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April 2021

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