Hyflux was the low bidder, submitting a price of $468m for the project and a tariff of $0.5557 a cubic metre for the plant’s desalinated water.

The 110 million-gallon-a-day plant (500,000 cubic-metre-a-day) will be developed on a build-own-operate basis. Hyflux will take a 51 per cent stake in the project company, with the state-owned Algerian Energy Company holding the remaining 49 per cent. The construction period is 36 months.

Bids were also submitted by Befesa and Sadyt; Inima and Aqualia; and Acciona Agua, all of Spain. The UK’s Biwater, the local Arcofina and Japan’s Toray; and the US’ GE with Egypt’s Orascom Construction Industries also bid for the project.