Drake & Scull Water & Power (DSWP), a subsidiary of Dubai-based Drake & Scull International (DSI), has been awarded a $79m contract for the design and construction of a district cooling plant in Riyadh, which is scheduled to start immediately and will take 18 months to complete.

DSWP will additionally be responsible for the operation and maintenance of the project for 10 years.

DSI’s projects in Saudi Arabia contributed to 29 per cent of the company’s total backlog as of September 2010. This includes the backlog consolidation of recently acquired ‘Drake & Scull International Saudi’, although Khaldoun Tabari, cheif executive officer of DSI, says: “DSI aims to increase the figure to 50 per cent by 2011 by continuing to focus our efforts and resources on the mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) division and in the kingdom’s water and power industry, which has proved to be highly lucrative.”