Singapore International Water Week Hits New Highs in Pacts, Attendees

The recently concluded Singapore International Water Week 2010 (June 28 to July 2) announced projects, tenders, and investments and R&D memoranda of understanding (MOUs) valued at more than S$2.8 billion, up by 27 percent from last year's S$2.2 billion, and more than 14,000 trade attendees from 85 countries/regions.

"Despite the uncertain global economic recovery, water remains a key focus area for governments and industries as cities around the world continue to grow at an unprecedented rate with rapid urbanization," said Michael Toh, managing director of the event.

Some of the more significant deals closed during the Water Week are the combined S$69 million contract clinched by home-grown water company, Moya Dayen Limited, from the Phnom Penh Water Supply Authority in Cambodia for Phase 1 of the Niroth Water Production Facilities Project. Awarded in two contracts, Moya Dayen will undertake the supply, delivery, and construction of a 25 meter's high intake tower located in the Mekong River, a raw water pumping station and a raw water transmission main as well as other ancillary works.

Under the second contract, Moya Dayen will construct a water treatment plant that includes treated water tanks, a treated water transmission main and other ancillary buildings. When completed, the Niroth Water Production Facilities - Phase I will be one of the largest water treatment facilities, producing 130,000m3/d of potable water, to serve the greater Phnom Penh population.

Sembcorp also signed an MOU, worth S$280 million, to expand seawater desalination capacity in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). A local subsidiary of Boustead, the global infrastructure engineering company, was awarded a S$21 million contract for the first new water recycling plant in UAE.

Several collaborative agreements were also signed during the week including the joint development of Optiqua's real time sensor technology by Optiqua Technologies, a subsidiary of Dutch optical sensor company Optisense and national water agency PUB, as well as a joint research and technology testing program to further develop energy-efficient water and wastewater treatment solutions by ITT Corporation and PUB.

The sensor technology is based on a patented Lab-on-Chip platform that can continuously monitor a full spectrum of potential contamination in drinking water. As a low-cost, online solution, it allows for an economically viable network to be implemented throughout a water distribution grid. Such a high density network of sensors provides an effective early warning system that can dramatically reduce incident response times and recovery costs.

Norit X-Flow and its local affiliate Norit Asia Pacific Pte Ltd and PUB are embarking on a comprehensive co-operation aimed at performing knowledge-intensive R&D programs and test-bedding projects. The two signed an MOU that outlines plans for cooperation on several water technologies, such as a Norit Airlif Membrane BioReactor Megablock validation plant.

Norit X-Flow, based in Enschede, the Netherlands, has developed a new compact membrane bioreactor (MBR) system based on its Airlift ultrafiltration technology. The new Megablock establishes a new order of magnitude in municipal wastewater treatment and reuse by delivering 50-100 percent more cubic meter output per square meter.

Siemens Water Technologies Corp. and Aramco Overseas Company, B.V., a subsidiary of Saudi Aramco, signed an exclusive patent and technology license agreement for the commercialization of the EcoRight MBR, a new wastewater treatment and water reuse system. The agreement grants Siemens the right to market and sell the first-of-its-kind system, which integrates MBR technology with additional purification processes to treat highly organic wastewaters, ensuring the cost-effective reuse of difficult-to-treat wastewater. The system is currently under final technical evaluation and is anticipated to be commercially available in early 2011.

The number of high-level delegates at the Water Leaders Summit jumped 22 percent to 379, including participation by board members of UN Secretary-General Advisory Board on Water and Sanitation, the Prince of Orange from The Netherlands, President of the Republic of Maldives, Vice President of World Bank, the Water and Environment Ministers of Cambodia, Hong Kong, India, Malaysia, Myanmar, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates as well as chief executive officers of leading international global water companies and water organizations.

In all, 26 new products and technologies made their regional and international debut at the Water Expo's Innovation Corner.

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