FIELD NOTES — EUROPE/MIDDLE EAST

The United Nations in New York City, USA, awarded the German company Kärcher, based in Winnenden, Germany, a contract to build and supply...

Germany: The United Nations in New York City, USA, awarded the German company Kärcher, based in Winnenden, Germany, a contract to build and supply up to 45 WTC 2000 mobile drinking water treatment plants. Twenty systems have already been delivered.

Recently, the UN decided to purchase a new generation of drinking water treatment plants for its aid missions and invited international tenders for the project. The WTC 2000 plant treats heavily polluted surface, ground and spring water. The plant treats 2,000 litres of drinking water per hour through ultrafiltration, which removes turbid substances, bacteria and other contaminants.

Oman: The government will announce a new law by the end of June 2004 to boost the privatisation of its power and water sectors, according to the Oman News Agency.

The state news agency quoted a spokesman of the national economy ministry: "It is our ambition to privatise the entire electricity generation and water distribution." The official, who assured the private sector of "no delays" in opening up the power network, also said investors would be given the opportunity "to operate the water network." "It has already been decided that the new law will be implemented by the second half of this year," the official added.

The new law will be part of the government's drive to allow foreign investors to own existing power stations, the official said, adding that the sultanate's three largest plants are to be offered to the public. "We will do this in phases and the plan will be made available once the law has been made public. We are inspired by the success of private companies establishing their own power plants in a programme we started in the 1990s."

Oman's ruler, Sultan Qaboos bin Said, pledged to continue wide-ranging economic reforms and boost the role of the private sector in a bid to move the Gulf state away from its heavy dependence on oil revenues.

UAE: Two desalination plants are now under construction at the cost of US$ 27.4 million and US$ 10.1 million, respectively, to solve the drinking water shortage in Ras Al Khaimah, United Arab Emirates.

The large desalination plant will have a processing capacity of 10 million gallons of water every day once it begins full operations in 2005. The smaller plant will be ready by October 2004 and will process three million gallons of water a day.

United Kingdom: The Greek contractor Aktor is using AGD Equipment's 2.845-m outside diameter Iseki Unclemole to install a 300-m-long tunnel under a railway in Athens. The tunnel will form the outlet of a surface water collection sewer for a new motorway, which will connect the Olympic Village to the Olympic Stadium for the 2004 games.

AGD will supply the complete microtunnelling system, including TBM and separation plant operators. The tunnel is being installed using the pipejacking method, using main thrust rams of 1,600 tonnes-capacity, and 3 intermediate jacking stations of 1,200 tonnes capacity.

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