Oman’s OPWP is to shortlist bidders to design, build and operate a 200,000 cmd desalination plant at Qurayyat, south of Muscat. It plans end-2014 award for March 2017 start-up with OPWP to purchase the plant’s potable water under a 20-year deal. OPWP says Qurayyat forms part of plans to increase its desalination capacity from 670,000 cmd to 1.3mn cmd by 2020. Prequalifiers are: Spain’s GS Inima, Tedagua, Valoriza, and Abengoa; Singapore’s Hyflux; Japan’s Sumitomo and Itochu. OPWP forecasts peak water demand in Oman’s main grids rising from 858,000 cmd in 2013 to 1.31mn cmd in 2020. Besides OPWP’s capacity, Oman’s Public Authority for Electricity and Water (PAEW) has a number of water sources available to the northern grid to offset any shortfall: existing wells drawing from the aquifer; the Wadi Dayqh surface water reservoir; a temporary 23,000 cmd desalination plant at Ghubrah; and a new 11,000 cmd desalination plant at Sohar. Besides Qurayyat, OPWP’s key new projects are the 191,000 cmd Al-Ghubrah IWP, due online this year (MEES, 20 September 2013) and a proposed 225,000 cmd IWP at Suwayq for 2018 start-up.