Fredi Lokiec, Executive Vice President, Special Projects – IDE Technologies Ltd.
The past 15 years have shown increasing interest in large-scale desalination worldwide, where seawater desalination has been proven a reliable and feasible source of potable and industrial water, alleviating increasing consumer needs, pressures and demands. Many of the large-scale seawater desalination facilities built in the past years, or presently under construction, are delivered under a Public-Private-Partnership framework, and most of these projects are implemented by the adoption of a Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) business structure. The reason for the preference of municipalities, public utilities for the BOT structure relies mainly on the benefits associated with its cost-effectiveness, affordability and efficiency, as well as the clear transfer of risks from public to private sectors. Successful large-scale BOT seawater desalination projects can be pinpointed in different business sectors and geographical (and cultural) areas, but all show common features that paved the way for their successful development and implementation.