Vol 4, Issue 8 (August 2003)
Need to know
- COMPANY RESULTS
France: Veolia Environnement (VE) reported a 6.2% decline in first half 2003 sales to €14.04 billion, mainly due to the negative effect of exchange rates.
Germany: Energy group Eon sold its controlling interest of 80.5% in Gelsenswasser to a consortium made up of the municipalities of Dortmund and Bochum
Saudi Arabia: The Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC) and Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) invited international developers to submit expressions of interest for the Kingdom’s first IWPP at Shoaiba, 120km south of Jeddah (see tracker).
- DEVELOPMENT AID/POLITICS
Iraq: Thames Water started work on a Unicef-funded project to establish mobile treatment plants drawingwater from the River Tigris.
- FINANCING & INVESTMENT/CLARIFICATION
UK: The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) closed a £1.87 billion structured bond issue for Southern Water. RBS structured the transaction and was the joint arranger, lead manager and bookrunner.
Israel: The Supreme Court rejected the petition filed by Ondeo Degrémont to declare it as the winner of a Mekorot tender to build the country’s central filtration facility (see GWI, Vol. 4, Issue 7, p.21).
- The mystery of the deep discount
United Utilities’ rights issue will cost it dear. Does it know something the rest of the industry doesn’t?
- When the money starts to talk…
What is the outlook for private sector participation in the US?
- Assessing the collateral damage
Will RWE be able to make its numbers in the US?
- Enacal to decide on Managua WwTP
A winner will be announced at the start of 2004 for a 160Ml/d (160,000m<sup>3</sup>/d) plant for the Nicaraguan capital.
- First China project for Malaysian JV
In a sign of things to come, an Asian company has been awarded a BOT contract for a WTP in China’s Jiangxi province.
- Guadalajara water projects come to life
Municipal utility Siapa plans to spend $700 million on improving water and wastewater services over the next 25 years.
- KDEB bags Selangor water transfer contract
The deal covers the Malaysian group’s involvement in the Langat-II scheme and is worth $600 million.
- Saudis consider demand-side reforms
Steps are being taken to address network problems, as evidenced by a series of studies undertaken by Thames Water. The main issue, however, is tariffs although there is some positive news on this front.
- SETE lands Aramco BOOT contract
For a 10,000m3/d desalination plant at the Rabigh refinery.
- Suez makes progress in Manaus
Three years after taking over a 30-year concession in the Amazon city, Suez has reduced network losses and improved water quality. There is still a lot of work to do – particularly to improve wastewater collection.
- Ten in the running for Chilean concessions
Prequalifiers include all of the big three private water companies through their respective subsidiaries, as well as Cascal and Saur.
- US private firms shrink from weak deals
Contract operators who had once competed fiercely for big city water and wastewater projects in North America may be throwing in the towel, writes Larry Chertoff.
- Water pricing: a two-year wait?
The crucial question for Saudi Arabia is when will water prices go up? One answer was given at a conference last month.
- What to expect from American
Could further consolidation in the regulated utility business be the best plan?
- Gelsenwasser goes to municipal utilities
Eon has sold the company to the Dortmund and Bochum Stadtwerke.
- Sellers join the queue
The sale of Gelsenwasser illustrates just how quickly the water sector has become a buyer’s market. What else is available?
- UU issues a bolt from the blue
Bucking the UK water sector trend of raising funds by issuing debt, United Utilities is to turn to the equity market for £1 billion to finance its capital investment obligations. The move has been interpreted as bizarre in some quarters.
- UK water industry seeks capital
UU’s proposal to raise £1 billion through a rights issue made UK water investors nervous. With the exception of Kelda, all the quoted companies lost value in July.