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Dubai waste-to-energy project achieves financial close

In the United Arab Emirates (UAE) an international consortium, in partnership with Dubai Municipality, has reached financial close on one of the world’s largest waste-to-energy (WtE) plants to be built in a single phase. Once completed, the 200 MWe facility will process 1.9 million tonnes of municipal solid waste (MSW) annually.

An artist’s rendering of Dubai waste-to-energy plant (image courtesy BESIX Group).

According to a statement, Dubai Waste Management Company P.S.C. (DWMC), a special purpose development vehicle consisting of BESIX, Tech Group, Hitachi Zosen Inova (HZI), ITOCHU Corporation, DUBAL Holding LLC, and Dubai Holding Commercial Operations Group LLC, entered into long-term project finance loan agreements in the amount of US$900 million with Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) and private financial institutions including Société Générale Bank, KfW IPEX Bank, Standard Chartered Bank, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, Mizuho Bank, Ltd., Siemens Bank and Crédit Agricole Bank.

Nippon Export and Investment Insurance (NEXI) will provide the insurance for a part of the loan being provided by the financial institutions.

Design, build, own, and operate

The project, led by Dubai Municipality, consists of a waste-to-energy (WtE) plant, located at the former Warsan landfill site. Designed in close collaboration between Dubai Municipality, Hitachi Zosen Inova, and BESIX, the 200 MWe facility will treat 1.9 million tonnes of municipal solid waste (MSW) per annum making it one of the largest in the world.

The agreement with Dubai Municipality includes the design and construction of the facilities, as well as financing and a 35-year operation and maintenance period on behalf of Dubai Municipality.

This strategic project marks an important contribution to Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050 and Dubai Plan 2021 to make the Emirate one of the most sustainable cities in the world.

The Dubai Centre for Waste Processing is proceeding according to schedule, with His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s support. The strategic focus of this project is to achieve environmental protection, reduce carbon emissions, divert waste from landfills, and contribute towards the realization of Dubai’s strategy to shift towards clean energy. Dubai Municipality is setting up an attractive environment for investors to support increased foreign direct investment, said H.E. Eng. Dawoud Al Hajri, Director General of Dubai Municipality.

Construction underway

Early construction works on site started in 2020. The Dubai waste-to-energy facility will consist of five processing lines, which will be delivered in 2023 and 2024.

BESIX is involved in the project in three ways: the investment, construction, and operations of the plant for 35 years. We have started construction and look forward to delivering and then operating, together with Hitachi Zosen Inova and in close collaboration with Dubai Municipality, this world-leading facility. With the project, the Emirate of Dubai has once again confirmed its leading role in the field of sustainability and the environment. We would like to thank Dubai Municipality and all the partners within DWMC for their trust and excellent collaboration, said Pierre Sironval, Chief Operating Officer of BESIX Group.

Following on the Jebel Ali water treatment plant in Dubai, the ISTP2 project in Abu Dhabi, Ajman Sewerage and the Safi water reuse station in Ajman), the recent refuse-derived fuel (RDF) facility in Umm Al Quwain, the Dubai Waste-to-Energy plant enables BESIX Group to make a new major contribution to the sustainable landscape of the UAE.

Site preparation works have already come underway. At the peak of the works, 2 500 workers will be deployed and the site will use up to 16 tower cranes, including the world’s largest tower cranes in order to install the equipment inside the plant (photo courtesy BESIX Group).

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