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Nine out of 13 prequalified companies attended an obligatory pre-tender meeting in early July for the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract on the 30 million-gallon-a-day (g/d) reverse osmosis (RO) seawater desalination plant at Shuwaikh. The four non-attendee companies and groups – Japanese firms Sasakura Engineering Company, Hitachi Zosen Corporation, and MitsubishiHeavy Industrieswith Mitsui & Company, and Preussagof Germany with South Korea’s Hyundai Engineering & Contracting Company– are now ineligible to bid by the 28 August deadline. The client on the estimated $200 million-300 million contract is the Energy Ministry (MEED 10:6:05).