Utico bags ‘Desalination Company the Year’ award in Spain

awardpicUtico, GCC’s largest private utility company, bagged the ‘Desalination Company the Year’ award at the Global Water Summit 2017 for developing an independent water and power project (IWPP) model to provide a sustainable, efficient and environment-friendly supply of electricity and water

This is the first time that a UAE-based company has received this award at the Global Water Summit held in Spain in April 2017.

The Global Water Award committee said that Utico has taken the desalination industries development model to the next level lining up a string of power and water projects around the Gulf while expanding abroad through acquisitions, particularly mentioning its takeover of Minjur acquisition plant in Chennai, India last year.

Richard Menezes, managing director of Utico, said, “This award is a global endorsement recognising the viability and investor acceptance of our private business model in the desalination and water industry sphere.

“In the case of governments, the benefit is either low or no subsidy and cost-efficiency, which in turn, trickle down benefits to consumers,” he added.

Utico has recently signed a partnership worth US$147mn with IDBI Infrastructure Fund II, a sovereign wealth fund managed by ASMA capital.

According to Menezes, this award is also an encouragement for other private utility players to build independent IWP models to put less liability on government and help them reign in subsidies, which is critical in low oil price environments.

Utico is currently developing water and other green projects in the UAE worth US$700mn and more than US$350mn across the world, with an aim to expand business across the GCC and other nearby global geographies.

The company has also announced a project to supply free water with buy-back option or lowest water tariff in the UAE to farmers for sustainable agriculture. Around 3,000 farms in the northern emirate are expected to be benefitted from this project. Currently, around 200 farms are in the process of being connected in the coming weeks.

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