The Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC) is a Saudi Government Corporation responsible for the desalination of seawater producing electric power and supplying various regions in the Kingdom with desalinated water.
The corporation was established by royal decree dated 20/08/1394 H, corresponding to 07/09/1974 H, as an independent government corporation.
The Main Objective of the Corporation
The corporation aims at consolidating the natural water resource in various regions and cities of the Kingdom where there are severe fresh water shortages, through the process of desalination.
The corporation is also habilitated to produce electric power as a by-product depending on economic and technical needs.
This is carried out in accordance with a comprehensive plan devised by the corporation and approved by the Council of Ministers.
The desalination of water, in addition to the production of electricity, represents the most important objectives of the development plans envisaged by the corporation. One of the main strategic goals for the implementation of these plans is to build a number of desalination plants, along with support facilities in regions suffering from shortages of fresh water supplies, based on the outcomes of technical feasibility studies.
Leadership and excellence in sea water desalination and power production
To meet the needs of our customers by providing them with desalinated seawater with effectiveness and credibility , at the lowest cost possible and with the highest economic returns, motivating and investing effectively in human resources, developing the desalination industry, contributing to social and economic development while complying with safety and environmental standards.
- Customer Service; Satisfy the needs of our clients by supplying them with desalinated seawater and electricity and deliver reliable services with the highest quality
- Financial sustainability: achieve the highest economic return by increasing revenues and reducing cost
- Operational effectiveness: Ensure quality and efficiency in terms of production and operations
- Human resources: Develop, motivate and build national competencies within a work environment characterized by fairness, teamwork, responsibility and loyalty.
- Economic development: Contribute effectively in developing and indigenizing know how in the field of desalination.
- Safety and security: Comply with the best practices of safety and security.
- Environmental sustainability: Comply with environmental rules and regulations
The corporation’s activities
The corporation endeavors to achieve its strategic goals as per the five year plan of the Kingdom by providing a sufficient quantity of desalinated water in accordance with the envisaged plans to build and operate desalination plants. This is done as described in the following steps:
1- Water production:
Water is produced through dual purpose desalination plants. All plants are operated and maintained in full by the corporation. The corporation operates 28 plants distributed over 17 sites located on the eastern and western coasts of the Kingdom. Total production of these plants is estimated at 4.6 million cubic meters per day. The total production of the Saudi Water Conversion Corporation represents more than 69% of the total production of desalinated water in the Kingdom. The rest is produced by the private sector. The Kingdom produces more than 6.6 million cubic meters of desalinated water per day, which represents 54% of the production in the gulf region. On an international scale, Saudi Arabia produces 22% of the total of desalinated water in the world.
2- Electrical power:
In addition to water desalination, SWCC also produces electricity through its dual purpose plants, which produce water and electricity at the same time. These plants use a multi-stage flash distillation system (MSF), where part of the electricity produced is used to operate the plant’s facilities. The rest of the power generated is exported to the Saudi Electric Company (SCECO).
The total volume of electricity produced by SWCC is estimated at 7.173 Megawatts per hour, which represents 12% of the total production of the Kingdom.
SWCC carries out the transmission of drinking water to the beneficiary regions using a very long pipeline network totaling 5,600 km in length with pipes ranging between 8 and 80 inches in diameter. The water is pumped through 47 pumping stations to a total of 224 water tanks, with a total capacity of 11,6 million cubic meters, in addition to 16 blending stations to mix the desalinated water with the underground water, and 8 other terminal stations.
Research and desalination techniques
Scientific research plays a vital role in spurring economic social and industrial growth and development, offering solutions to development issues and widening horizons for knowledge acquisition in various scientific fields, which is in line with the Kingdom’s five year plan that gives high priority to scientific research, especially with regard to water desalination.
SWCC puts great efforts, through its Saline Water Desalination Research Institute in Jubail, to further improve water desalination technologies and to discover new techniques and methods to reduce cost and to protect the environment. This research institute is considered one of the biggest research institutes in the Middle East, specializing in water desalination technologies.
SWCC has always considered the development of a national competent workforce and the enhancement of its technical skills and capabilities of operating and maintaining its facilities as one of its most important goals. Consequently, it intensified the number of training programs and specialized seminars and conferences, in addition to induction and training programs offered through the Jubail training center. It has also given a number of its employees the opportunity to study in the Kingdom and abroad and earn post graduate degrees. These considerably successful programs have greatly contributed to the creation of a trained workforce capable of achieving the corporation’s mission with competence. As a result, the rate of saudization has increased to more than 89% of the total workforce, estimated at 10,000 employees.