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Saudi Govt Efforts to Boost Water Sector Draws Positive Reactions

March 6, 2017 | Zawya

RIYADH: Top Saudi businessmen have expressed support for the Saudi government’s project to determine the cost of investment in the water sector as well as approximate revenues.

In an interview with the Saudi Press Agency (SPA), Mansour Al-Mushaiti, undersecretary of water and agriculture for planning and development, said that the project aims to determine water production costs more accurately.

Al-Mushaiti also said that the project aims to determine the expected revenues from water projects being undertaken in the Kingdom.

Abdullah Al-Meleihi, chairman of Al-Ramez International Group, said the government has appointed EY (formerly Ernst & Young) to conduct a study regarding estimates on costs in investment and profits from the water sector.

EY is one of the “Big Four” accounting firms and provides assurance (including financial audit), tax, consulting and advisory services to companies.

He said that the project comes within the ministry’s efforts at privatization aimed at raising the level of water services to the beneficiaries in the future.

The project will estimate the costs of delivering water from the source to the consumer.

He noted that the Saudi government had approved SR92 billion ($24.5 billion) support for water, environment and agriculture to help meet the goals under the Saudi Vision 2030 economic plan.

Yasser Al-Harbi, vice chairman of Apral International Group, said that the government is making the right move in enlisting the services of EY to determine the cost of investment.