SAUDI ARABIA

Strategic storage project to help overcome crises

July 12, 2017
The Briman Strategic Water Reservoir in Jeddah, is considered the world’s largest drinking water storage facility. — Courtesy photo
The Briman Strategic Water Reservoir in Jeddah, is considered the world’s largest drinking water storage facility. — Courtesy photo

Saudi Gazette report

JEDDAH – Saudi ministries have been continuing their efforts to establish strategic storage facilities all over the Kingdom to contain negative effects of global economic crises.

These storages aim at ensuring adequate supply of food, water and oil and other most demanded goods for more than a year at times of crises that often occur all of a sudden.

Minister of Environment, Water and Agriculture Abdul Rahman Al-Fadli, who is also Chairman of the Saline Water Conversion Corporation, recently signed a deal to establish 17 water storage centers.

“The centers will be established in Sharaie and Hada in the Makkah region,” the minister said, adding that each of them will have a capacity to store 170,000 cubic meters of water.

They will have a total capacity of 2.9 million cubic meters of water.

The project, which will serve Makkah and Taif, will be completed within 1,095 days and the storages will become operational in stages during that period, Al-Fadli said.

Meanwhile, the first phase of a similar project in Jeddah has almost been completed at a cost of SR760 million. It will have a capacity to store two million cubic meters of water.

“The project includes 11 concrete water tanks, each with a capacity of 187,500 cubic meters. They have become operational to serve people in Jeddah city,” a senior official said.

The National Water Company has completed 70 percent of the project’s second phase, which will cost SR374 million and will have a capacity of one million cubic meters.

The second phase will have six storage tanks, each with a capacity of 166,000 cubic meters. NWC has completed 31 percent of the third phase, which will cost SR451 million and provide capacity of one million cubic meters. This phase will have four tanks, each with a capacity of 250,000 cubic meters.

Fawaz Bahlas, manager of the business unit in Jeddah, said the NWC started implementing the project in 2012. “Total capacity of the Jeddah water storage project has reached four million cubic meters,” he said, adding that the project would cost more than SR1.5 billion.

In a related development, the water department in the Eastern Province said it has allocated adequate amount of money for a storage project in the region.

Minister Al-Fadli has emphasized the importance of the Kingdom’s strategic food security program. “Saudi Arabia will need wheat, barley, rice, cooking oil, soya beans and meat in large quantities by 2030 to meet the country’s growing population,” he added.

The Kingdom meets its food requirements by importing from foreign countries and investing in agricultural projects abroad. “Today everybody knows the significance of strategic food storage projects to meet the Kingdom’s future requirements,” he explained.

The General Organization for Grain Silos and Flour Mills has a capacity to store two million metric ton of wheat to meet the Kingdom’s needs for seven months.

The Kingdom has established five oil storage tanks in Riyadh, Jeddah, Abha, Madinah and Qassim. Saudi Aramco can make use of these oil storage facilities economically, said Al-Hayat Arabic daily.


July 12, 2017
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