The Saudi Council of Ministers on 10 September approved a plan to privatize stateowned desalination company Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC). SWCC is the world’s largest desalination firm, operating 17 plants to deliver almost two-thirds of the kingdom’s desalinated water. SWCC’s desalination capacity currently amounts to 4.61mn m3/d according to state electricity regulator Ecra, 60% of the kingdom’s total.

Saudi energy supremo Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman has announced plans for privatizing more than 20 state firms, with many of those on offer to be desalination companies and by far the largest is SWCC (MEES, 19 October 2018). Though the part-sale of Saudi Aramco is of course by far the largest single element of Riyadh’s plans to sell off state assets, the possible revenues from the sale of SWCC may rival the potential $15-20bn earnings from an initial 1% of Aramco slated to be listed domestically (MEES, 13 September). (CONTINUED - 269 WORDS)