Singapore Int’l Water Week Ends on a High Note

The recently concluded Singapore International Water Week 2010 (28 June to 2 July 2010) ended on a high note for many local and international water companies, where the total value of announcements for projects awarded, tenders, investments into Singapore and R&D MOUs exceeded S$2.8 billion, up by 27 percent from last year’s S$2.2 billion. The event, which was held together with the World Cities Summit this year, also saw a  record increase in the number of trade attendees to over 14,000 from 85 countries/regions.

“We are extremely pleased with the positive outcome at the 2010 Singapore International Water Week which continues to grow into its third year. The continued strong support from participating countries and regions is an affirmation of our vision to be the global platform for water solutions.  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 urbanisation. Many countries continue to seek clean and affordable solutions to meet their respective needs and use the Water Week as a platform for learning, exchange and networking. We are delighted with the significant increase in the total value of announcements during the week. It augurs well for the growing water sector across the globe and in ensuring delivery of water services where needed,” said Michael Toh, Managing Director of Singapore International Water Week.

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Key announcements

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Some of the more significant deals closed at last week’s Water Week included the combined S$69 million contract clinched by home-grown water company, Moya Dayen Ltd., 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 m 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 which 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/day of potable water, to serve the greater Phnom Penh population.

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During the week, another Singapore home-grown energy, water and marine group, Sembcorp, also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), worth S$280 million to expand seawater desalination capacity in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). On the local front, the company announced that it will develop a new integrated wastewater treatment facility in Jurong Island’s Tembusu District.

A local subsidiary of Boustead, a global infrastructure engineering company, was awarded a  S$21 million contract for the first new water recycling plant in UAE.

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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 Corp. and PUB.

Global Water Intelligence, the leading information service for the international water industry also announced its plans to set up its Asia office in PUB’s WaterHub, a centre for technology, learning and networking and home to many renowned water-related organizations such as the Singapore Water Association, International Water Association, Netherlands Water House, Singapore Society for Trenchless Technology, and R&D institutes of leading water players like Siemens, Nitto Denko and Optiqua Technologies.

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Encouraging statistics

Demonstrating the event’s growing global appeal and significance, this year’s Water Week received strong support from the global community, including key international organizations, as well as the government, industry, research and consultancy sectors from 85 countries. Feedback from the participants on the Water Week and its pillar events such as the Water Leaders Summit, Water Convention, Water Expo, Business Forums and the Lee Kuan Yew Water Prize has been very positive all-round.

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, Crown Prince of Orange, 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 CEOs of leading international global water companies and water organizations.

At the Water Convention, over 1,000 experts, academics and practitioners came together to discuss the advancements and challenges in water technologies. In particular, the enhanced networking and business opportunities, such as the Industry-to-Industry networking sessions to enable cross industry interaction at the Water Week were well received as testified by the robust attendance at every session. The number of participants in 2010 represented an increase of almost 20 percent over the preceding year.

The Water Expo, a major water trade show showcasing the latest and widest range of products, services and water technologies, saw a record turnout with a total of eight country pavilions, boosted by the debut of two new country pavilions from Canada and Korea. The Water Expo was completely sold out in the month leading to the start of the event.  Following their success in previous editions of the Water Week, Japanese companies turned up in full force and showcased their latest water solutions in an expanded Japan Pavilion, which was double the space compared to last year. The Expo also featured more than 500 participating companies from nearly 40 countries/regions.

Said Jimmy Lau, Managing Director, Singapore Airshow & Events Pte Ltd (SAe), co-event organizers of Singapore International Water Week, “The sell out success at this year’s Water Expo is proof that water companies are looking at the Water Expo as  a platform of choice and a must-attend event with a proven ROI. At this year’s event, exhibitors are showcasing a wider and even more comprehensive range of products and services, in addition to taking up bigger exhibition space and spending more on their booths.  The Water Expo at Water Week 2010 has seen a better integration of co-located events and we have received very positive feedback from our exhibitors who have lauded the quality of trade visitors and the myriad offer of rich networking opportunities. We have already received bookings from both returning exhibitors and also new reservations for next year’s Water Expo.”

In all, 26 new products and technologies made their regional and international debut at the Water Expo’s Innovation Corner, signaling a strong endorsement of the Water Week as an important platform for such global and regional launches.

As one of the pillar events of the Singapore International Water Week, the eight Business Forums provided excellent premiere networking and deal-making opportunities for leading water markets in Americas, China, Europe, Australia, India, Japan, Middle East and North Africa, and Southeast Asia. Over 80 eminent speakers and distinguished industry experts from both the public and private sectors graced each of the eight business forums.

Apart from these, the number of co-located events increased by nearly 60 percent to 120 events, including the inaugural Asia-Pacific Water Ministers’ Forum, the 14th Meeting of the UN Secretary-General’s Advisory Board on Water and Sanitation, and the first- ever River Basin & Delta Management Workshop.

“We have already begun working on the 2011 event and will continue to work on the many ideas and solutions developed and discussed at the Water Week 2010. Water Week 2011 will focus on efficient and cost-effective solutions for a changing urban environment,” added Toh.

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