Participating at the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank’s Annual Meeting 2023, ACWA Power discussed how public and private sector players can achieve long-term energy and water goals through collaborative action
Sharm El-Shaikh, Egypt : Saudi-listed ACWA Power, the world’s largest private water desalination company, leader in energy transition and first mover into green hydrogen, has reiterated the need for strong collaboration between public and private sector players to speed up the transition to clean energy and water generation at the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank’s (AIIB) eighth Annual Meeting in Sharm El-Shaikh, Egypt.
Held under the patronage and presence of the Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, the event brought together members, partners, business leaders, civil society organisations and industry experts to discuss investments aligned with sustainable economic growth. ACWA Power was represented at the event by Abdulhameed Al Muhaidib, Chief Financial Officer and Sarah Al Harthey, Executive Manager of Business Development.
Speaking during a panel discussion at the event titled ‘Energy Transition in the Middle East – Challenges and Opportunities’, Al Muhaidib said that the robust approach to PPPs taken by governments in the Middle East has enabled the rapid scaling up of low-carbon power generation and efficient water desalination projects.
Al Muhaidib highlighted how the region is one of the fastest growing when it comes to sustainable energy projects, discussing how the appetite for green projects has pushed ACWA Power to raise the bar with competitive tariff rates on its projects. For instance, ACWA Power has reduced tariff rates on its solar PV projects by over 80% in just eight years.
“We expect this appetite to ramp up even further in the coming years as governments realise the additional economic benefits of changing their energy mix beyond the climate and environmental ones,” he added.
During the session, Al Muhaidib also discussed the role of projects such as the US$8.5 billion NEOM Green Hydrogen Project in accelerating the pace of energy transition and how collaboration with government entities and offtakers is key in enabling such developments.
“Another area for consideration is water desalination, a sector that ACWA Power is deeply committed to,” said Al Muhaidib. “It is part of our strategic mission to provide water in an affordable and sustainable manner, which has seen us reduce the amount of energy consumption per cubic metre of water by 87% in the past decade.”
ACWA Power has also delivered some of the lowest water tariffs globally, most recently submitting the lowest water levelised tariff rate in the world for the Hassyan Seawater Reverse Osmosis (SWRO) facility in Dubai.
In parallel, the event saw Sarah Al Harthey participate in a flagship seminar titled ‘Raising the Ambition to Meet the Climate Challenge: Mobilisation of Resources for Climate Finance’, where she discussed the devastating impacts of climate change on the Global South, and how it is essential to mobilise resources to implement projects that enable energy transition.
Over the coming months, ACWA Power will continue to pursue new opportunities and partnerships that align with its mission of delivering power and water in an affordable and accessible manner, with the least possible impact on the environment.