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Sabesp Seeks Partner for 1.68 Billion-Real Water Project

Cia. de Saneamento Basico do Estado de Sao Paulo, Brazil’s biggest water distributor, is seeking a partner to develop a 1.68-billion real ($823 million) project that will supply water to municipalities surrounding Sao Paulo.

The Sao Lourenco Water Producing System will be developed under a private-public partnership and a contract is expected to be signed by September 2013, the Sao Paulo-based utility said in a statement issued today at a press event.

The population of Sao Paulo’s metropolitan region is growing by 300,000 a year, faster than most other Brazilian cities, Chief Executive Officer Dilma Pena said today at the gathering announcing the project.

“We have very little water up here at 700 meters (2,296 feet),” Geraldo Alckmin, the governor of Sao Paulo state, said today at the event, referring to the city’s altitude.

Companies will be able to submit their proposals on Jan. 8 and will be wholly responsible for financing the facility, Alckmin said. The concession period is 25 years.

The project may take as many as 48 months to build and will deliver 4,700 liters (1,240 gallons) of water a second to cities when operational by 2017, he said. It includes a water treatment plant in Vargem Grande Paulista and 83 kilometers (52 miles) of pipeline, according to the statement.

Sabesp fell 1.8 percent to 83.77 reais at the close in Sao Paulo.

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