Saudi-Spanish cooperation to invest in dams and desalination plants

An archive photo of Al-Jubail desalination plant in Saudi Arabia
An archive photo of Al-Jubail desalination plant in Saudi Arabia
  • Ensuring the incorporation of international experiences, Saudi Arabia and Spanish companies cooperated to invest in dams and desalination plants.

The Saudi Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture discussedways to strengthen cooperation with Spanish companies to invest in variouswater fields, especially in the fields of dams, desalination plants, transportand distribution, and provide opportunities for companies to obtain watersector projects.

This came during a meeting between the deputy minister for water affairs,Dr. Abdul-Aziz Al-Shaibani, and the Ambassador of Spain to Saudi Arabia, Paro Irentho at the Ministry's headquarters.

The meeting was attended by representatives of the Spanish side,the General Organization for Desalination, the National Water Company, theSaudi Water Partnership Company, the Public Irrigation Corporation, theNational Research Center, the Public departments of the Ministry of Water, and thePublic Administration of International Cooperation and Agricultural InvestmentAbroad.

These meetings were aimed at discussing common issues between thetwo countries in the water sector and ways of enhancing cooperation withSpanish companies in the field of water and exchanging views on the challengesfacing the water sector in the two countries, such as desertification, drought,and the use of water for agricultural purposes, according to a statement issuedby the ministry.

The ministry stressed its keenness to benefit from international experiences, exchange experiences, and involve the private sector in the development and sustainability of the water sector within the objectives of the vision of the Kingdom 2030.

For his part, Dr. Al-Shaibani stressed the need to benefit from theSpanish experience in the field of water resources management. The Spanishofficials and companies were previously invited to participate in the SaudiWater Forum for this purpose. Noting that the allocation of projects throughthe involvement of the private sector of the most important objectives of theNational Water Strategy.

He added that the ministry represented in the Water Agency isinterested in developing the deal with the Spanish side in the fields of damsand irrigation, through cooperation and access to the Spanish experience andthe exchange of experts, especially in the construction, management andoperation of dams and the irrigation sector.

For his part, Ambassador Paro Irentho talked about the difficultiesrelated to the global water situation in general and the water situation inboth countries in particular. He pointed out that Spain has been suffering inrecent years from waves of drought and lack of rain due to climate change,while Saudi Arabia is facing desertification and the consequences of climatechange, in addition to similar challenges in terms of economic development andpopulation growth, which in turn pressure on the rates of water demand forindustrial, municipal and agricultural purposes and how this relates to waterand food security.

He stressed the desire of Spanish companies to participateeffectively through economic cooperation in accordance with the objectives ofthe vision of the Kingdom 2030. The Ambassador also promised to overcomedifficulties for Spanish companies working in the fields of water desalination,water purification, engineering and investment advisory services in SaudiArabia.

The Ministry has launched the National Water Strategy 2030 with theaim of integrating national water sector directives, policies, legislation, andpractices with the main objectives of restructuring the sector, reforming thewater and sanitation sector to ensure the sustainable development of waterresources in Saudi Arabia, developing water production and distributiontechnologies while providing services at lower cost, high quality andreasonable prices.

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