Signing of the contractual documents related to the implementation of the project of seawater desalination for irrigation and drinking water supply in the Souss Massa region : 29/06/2017
Mr. Mohammed BOUSSAID, Minister of Economy and Finance, and Mr. Aziz AKHANNOUCH, Minister of Agriculture, Maritime Fisheries, Rural Development and Water and Forests, presided on Thursday, 29 June, 2017, in Rabat, the signing ceremony of the contractual documents related to the implementation of the seawater desalination project for irrigation and drinking water supply in the region of Souss Massa.
Seawater desalination is imposed by the necessity of accompanying the development of Souss Massa region characterized by significant dynamism at the economic, social, urban and touristic levels, as 80% of the Region’s needs are currently met by superficial resources (dams of Moulay Abdellah and Abdelmoumen), while the remaining 20% comes from underground resources (Souss water table).
In his intervention, the Minister of Economy and Finance specified that this project is the biggest seawater desalination project in the world shared between irrigation and drinking water.
Mr. BOUSSAID stressed the innovative approach of design and assembly that relies on public-private partnership characterizing this project. In specifying the particularities that can make it a reference at the global level, the Minister considered that this experience is likely to be reproduced in other regions of the Kingdom as well as in a number of regions in the world.
The Minister of Agriculture, Maritime Fisheries, Rural Development and Water and Forests described the timing of signing the contractual documents of the implementation of the seawater desalination project for irrigation and drinking water supply in the region of Souss Massa, a “great historic moment”.
Mr. AKHANNOUCH pointed out that this major project is part of the strategic vision of His Majesty the King, God assist him, which gives great importance to the sustainable development of the Kingdom, to the preservation of environment and the coastline, the preservation of underground resources and the promotion of green energies.
The Minister also congratulated the teams involved in the project, namely those of the Ministry of Economy and Finance, the State Secretariat for Water, the National Office of Electricity and Drinking Water, the Ministry of Agriculture, Maritime Fisheries, Rural Development and Water and Forests, and the Investment Bank accompanying the project as well as the President of the Regional Council of Souss Massa Region.
The Secretary of State for Water, Mrs. Charafat AFAILAL, expressed her great satisfaction as to the completion of this “exemplary and model” project, which is likely to ensure a socio-economic balance.
The seawater desalination project for irrigation and drinking water supply in Souss Massa region will be the largest of its kind in the world because of its production capacity shared between the needs of irrigation and drinking water. When finished, this project will make it possible to secure the drinking water supply of the Grand Agadir and provide water for high-value-added irrigated agriculture of the area of Chtouka.
For the drinking water component, the seawater desalination project, with a start-up capacity of 150,000 m3 / day, which will reach 200,000 m3 / day, aims at securing the supply of drinking water to a population of 2.3 million inhabitants by 2030, 20% of them in rural areas. This large-scale project will also increase rural access to drinking water to 100% in Grand Agadir, support the socio-economic development of the region and preserve groundwater resources.