Global Water Intelligence Magazine

Apr 16 cover

Vol 17, Issue 4 (April 2016)

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In Global Water Intelligence this month

Need to know

  • Hyflux is under fire from its Algerian client after failing to resolve problems at its two desal plants in the country.The Algerian Energy Company is making compensation claims against the Singapore-based membrane specialist as a result of...
  • Hyflux and its partner Malakoff have also been appealing against a decision by the Algerian government to fine them $36 million for allegedly breaching foreign exchange regulations relating to the Souk Tleta project...
  • On the positive side, Hyflux reported that it has been awarded the EPC and 25-year O&M contract for the 150,000m³/d and 457MW Ain Sokhna project in the Suez Canal Zone in Egypt...
  • The campaign to lighten up the Hyflux balance sheet continues. The newly published annual report shows that Galaxy NewSpring (the loss-making holding company for 24 Chinese water and wastewater projects), along with...
Bad news
  • Acciona won its case against the Barcelona Metropolitan Area in the Catalan high court last month, annulling a 35-year concession awarded in 2012 to rival operator Agbar...
  • Ranhill’s mid-March initial public offering on the Bursa Malaysia was 87% undersubscribed in its retail portion...
Desal today
  • The Federal Electricity and Water Authority in the UAE has received more than 40 expressions of interest from potential developers for its planned 45MIGD (204,570m³/d) privately financed desalination plant...
  • Riyadh-based Advanced Water Technology is soliciting proposals from advisors to work on a pre-feasibility study for a 400,000m³/d solar-driven SWRO plant at Yanbu...
Fund times
  • Venture capital investor Aster Capital is looking to dedicate €30 million of a new €100- 150 million funding round to water technologies, and has hired veteran sector specialist Gaëtane Suzenet to oversee its strategy in the sector...
China trends
  • Sembcorp is investing in a new International Water Hub as part of an “eco hi-tech” island development in Nanjing, China...
  • Sludge is rising up the policy agenda in China. Having spent the past 15 years fitting the country with wastewater treatment plants, dealing with the solids is now the main challenge...
Contract ops up
  • The five biggest private contract operators active in the North American water and wastewater market generated revenues of $1.98 billion last year – a jump of 10.9% yearon- year, marking the largest percentage increase so far this decade...

Project Tracker

Project Tracker

Charting the progress of over 900 Desal, Reuse and PPP water projects in the international water industry.

Download a sample

Latest Tracker Updates

Project Tracker Database
(Subscription Requried)
Sterling Nat... United States 20 Jul 18 The Arcadis/Ba... Reuse
Okhla WWTP India 20 Jul 18 The bid submis... WWTP
FGUA O&M, FL United States 20 Jul 18 The shortlist ... Utility
Michelson WR... United States 20 Jul 18 At its meeting... Reuse
Los Alisos M... United States 20 Jul 18 At its meeting... Reuse

What's making the news in global water projects this month

Project tracker

Desal dreams in California and the Gulf; how to bid on a dual-track project; concession opportunities loom in Africa and Brazil; poachers keep the game alive in the US contract ops market; all the latest project news from around the world this month.


GWI Water Index

Into every water portfolio a little rain must fall

While wet weather helped to restore investors’ faith in Sabesp’s survivability, the return of Ranhill to the stock market was clouded by the Malaysian government corruption scandal.

Water on the markets this month:

GWI IndexValueChangeDate
Global Water154.54-3.56%10 Jun
Asian Water104.62-6.53%10 Jun
EMEA Water90.98-3.01%10 Jun
Americas Water245.89-2.12%10 Jun

Market Profile

Efficiency, environment and expansion: the outlook for water until 2020

Wastewater beats water, sludge beats wastewater, reuse beats desalination, industrial beats municipal, North America beats Europe, and India beats China in terms of market growth rates in GWI’s latest report. What will drive the water business in 2016 and beyond?

2,000 pages in 100 words

GWI’s new Global Water Market report stretches to five volumes. This is the nub of it in less than a minute.

Regulations, restructuring, and reaction to crises: the local drivers of a global market

South Asia, Africa, and the Middle East look set to be the fastest growing markets over the years to 2020, largely because governments in these regions have prioritised the sector. Europe remains the laggard, although there are some bright spots.

The List

Water’s biggest growth markets (2016-2020)

This month’s list illustrates where the near-term growth is likely to come from in the global water market. Among the developed markets, Canada and Australia offer the best prospects, while Egypt, Iran and Indonesia are set to outpace the rest of the world.


Christopher gasson Who’s up for a sex change?

Christopher Gasson looks at what Stantec’s takeover of MWH Global means for the future of the supply chain in the water industry.

Chart of the month

Chart of the month: Desalination versus water reuse (1990 - 2030)

This month’s chart comes from our newly published Global Water Market report. It tracks the progress of the desalination and water reuse markets over the past 25 years, and imagines the outlook for the next 15 years.

Chart of the month april 2016


Contract ops market streaks ahead despite thin deal flow

Everyone is trying to do more with less in the North American outsourced water services market. How will the sector shake out in a post-Flint world?

Water looms large in Peruvian election race

A pro-industry government in Peru could open the door to further private sector intervention in the country’s water sector. Despite the prospect of reduced government subsidies, the prospect of splitting up Lima’s water utility has not found universal favour.

Monterrey aqueduct gets a new lease of life

A controversial $1 billion water transfer scheme using private finance may yet see the light of day, after its most vehement opponent emerged as a reluctant supporter. Any alternative is likely to involve boosting local reuse treatment capacity.

Wesstrickland The state of P3s in Texas

Despite the troubles at Vista Ridge, a new supreme court ruling gives hope for water PPPs in Texas, argues lawyer Wes Strickland.

Americas Water in brief

California’s snowpack stood at 85% of its multi-year average on 1st April, versus just 5% the year before.

Asia pacific

Sembcorp hinges growth on industrial tech power-play

Sembcorp is betting that opening its treatment facilities to tech start-ups and hosting a new water hub will give it the edge in the maturing Chinese industrial water market.

Asset-light home market offers room for growth as Ranhill speeds through cash

Ranhill has been left short of cash for existing restructuring commitments after a sceptical market pushed down its IPO price to the bottom of the indicated range. Capex-light wastewater services and NRW reduction contracts may throw a lifeline to the company.

Market lands blow on Ranhill IPO

Ranhill Holdings’ long-awaited return to the Bursa Malaysia was spurned by retail investors on completion last month. What went wrong?

Australian report unveils a gold mine of water data

Australia’s O&M costs fall but consumer bills continue to rise; Melbourne ups capital spend; Adelaide’s desal consumption declines: Australia’s 2014-15 water data analysed.

Chinese government policy pressure cracks open sludge management market

The challenge of untreated sludge has risen up China’s policy agenda, driving water companies to explore new business models and new technologies to gain market share. GWI’s Yujia Shen investigates.

Lay-offs and sell-offs at Hyflux while desal woes continue in Algeria

As Hyflux battles legal cases on multiple fronts in Algeria, it has brought the axe down on a number of technical staff at home. More Chinese assets have now been put on the block as the group bets on more growth in its power and spa ventures.

Willy yeo (In)credible purchases

Recent backpedalling by Chinese-led acquirors bodes ill for the water industry, argues Willy Yeo.

Asia Water in brief

Filipino water authority and regulator MWSS has secured a $123 million ADB loan to improve Manila’s raw water transmission system.


Thames Water sale to shake up UK sector ownership

Macquarie has put more than a quarter of Thames Water’s equity on the block as it seeks to wind up the fund housing the bulk of its holding. The process may yet result in an IPO.

New water tech investment fund takes the smart approach

Aster Capital’s industrial backers are convinced that water is the next big thing. They have hired in an industry veteran to help accelerate the commercialisation of a new wave of smart technologies.

Pollet Water Group looks to new horizons as buy-and-build strategy pays dividends

The family-owned business has been quietly gaining critical mass through a combination of organic expansion and selected acquisitions. It is now ready to go global.

Double KO on the cards for Agbar and Acciona

Vicious rivalry between two of Spain’s largest private operators seems likely to rob them both of their most lucrative contracts.

David lloyd owen Paying free water’s price

Northern Ireland would need to implement structural financial changes to bring in water tariffs, says David Lloyd Owen.

Europe Water in brief

Irish start-up OxyMem has secured investment from Dow Chemical to commercialise its membrane aerated biofilm reactor (MABR) technology, which it claims can reduce energy consumption in wastewater aeration systems by up to 75%.

Middle East and Africa

Investors queue for wave of Iranian PPPs

The procession of public-private partnerships in Iran has reached such a pace that the authorities are planning mass signing ceremonies. When will the conditions be right for international investors to get involved?

Jordan taps Islamic finance to keep water sector moving

The country is looking for new ways to raise cash and cover operating costs at its water utilities. Will tapping Islamic investors make PPPs a more credible prospect?

Second-stage Saudi solar desal targets $0.40/m3 water cost

Just a year after signing off on the world’s largest solar desal facility, AWT is looking to scale up in size – and down in cost.

FEWA deluged with IWP interest

The emirati utility will need a rigorous prequalification process to thin down a massive list of interested bidders.

Qatar mega-project reaches financial close

The developer of the Umm al Houl power and water plant has scored a home run for membrane desalination after securing funding for the massive project.

Tom scotney Fair pricing starts with PR

Water tariff reform in the Gulf is necessary and welcome, but opponents must be taken seriously, says Tom Scotney.

Middle East Water in brief

France’s Veolia Water Technologies has been awarded a contract by Qatar Engineering and Construction Company to deliver a wastewater treatment plant for the Dolphin Energy gas facility in Ras Laffan.

DR Congo considers broader role for private water operators

The recent extension of a short-term services contract could be the precursor to a wider roll-out of PPPs in the country’s water sector. A historical reliance on World Bank finance means that further reform is required before the sector becomes truly bankable.

Suez takes the long view in African water

The group has a 60-year history of building water treatment plants in sub-Saharan Africa. Now, it wants to grab a larger share of the PPP market.