Insights

Algeria’s lessons from ACWA Power

Our Maghreb editor, Emilie Filou, who was in Algeria last week, came back with a disturbing description of the economic nationalism which seems to be taking a grip of the country (see GWI’s forthcoming February issue). In recent years, Algeria has been one of the strongest growth markets in the global water industry, with its massive desalination programme and the...

Desalters discover the meaning of competition

Mostly we talk about market consolidation, but over the past decade, the reverse has been happening in the desalination industry. Growth has sucked more and more players into the industry, to the extent that the market leaders have actually been losing market share. It is such an unusual phenomenon that I am not sure there is a word for it. I call it market...

How can we meet oil’s growing demand for water?

Energy is becoming a thirsty commodity. Before the world’s fossil fuels are finally exhausted, it is likely that their extraction will require an unimaginable amount of water.

There are two main factors driving this growth. One is that as old fields reach the end of their productive life, it becomes necessary to use water or steam to chase out the last traces of...

Lack of choice still limits water’s performance

We have been drawing up the end of year performance tables for the water stocks that we track in our Global Water Index. The full review will appear in the January issue of GWI, but the short version of the story is that Asian water stocks did very well (up 43%), and American water stocks did reasonably well (up 23.1%), while European water stocks went nowhere (up...

Is water China’s Achilles’ heel?

The final Lex column of the old year in the Financial Times predicts industrial disaster, crop failure and famine in China as a result of its failure to address water scarcity. The article is written from the perspective of 2019. “The Great Wall of Credit of 2009-12 had unleashed too much industrial capacity, consuming too much water,” the article argues,...

Are you ready for stage three of the credit crisis?

“As I see it, this crisis is going to go through three phases: firstly, it will work its way through the banking sector. Next, as banks reduce their lending, the bloodletting will move on to the business sector. Finally, as a result of rescuing both banks and businesses, the crisis will move on to the public sector.”

The above quote comes from this column...