Gecol is still evaluating bids, submitted in September 2001, for the construction of two other desalination plants. Three companies, Sidemof France, Italy’s Fisia Italimpiantiand Wier Westgarthremain in the running for the plants in Tripoli and Benghazi, with Sidem cited as the frontrunner. With a capacity of 250,000 cm/d, the Tripoli plant will be the largest project in Gecol’s desalination programme. Its counterpart in Benghazi South will be marginally smaller, having a proposed capacity of 240,000 cm/d. Both plants will be built using multi-stage flash (MSF) technology (MEED 2:11:01).

The desalination plants form part of Gecol’s ambitious 10-year programme for the construction of 11 new plants across the country requiring an estimated investment of $1,000 million. Once installed, the new units will provide an additional 700,000 cm/d of drinking water to the arid North African country (MEED 20:7:01).