Veolia and Suez selected to design and operate the drinking water treatment plant in the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka

Dhaka, the capital of Bangladeshi. Image credit: Veolia Water Technologies 


The Dhaka Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (WASA), the authority in charge of drinking water and wastewater management for the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka, has awarded the two French international groups– Veolia and Suez the contract to design, build and operate the Gandharbpur drinking water treatment plant after an international call for tender.

The contract, worth €275 million, will be executed by a joint venture set up between Veolia and SUEZ, through a subsidiary of Veolia Water Technologies, as equal partners. The project will be funded by the Asian Development Bank, the French Development Agency (AFD), the European Investment Bank and the Bangladeshi government.

The new drinking water treatment plant will use a water intake 22 km upstream on the Meghna River. Located in Dhaka’s Gandharbapur district, this plant with a daily production capacity of 500,000 m³ will supply approximately 4.3 million out of the capital’s 11 million residents with drinking water compliant with the World Health Organization’s international standards.




A drawing of the new water treatment plant to be built in Dhaka’s Gandharbapur district. Image credit: Veolia Water Technologies


Dhaka is today facing dwindling supply from its aquifers, the main source of drinking water for its population. Compounded by population growth and increasing urbanization, the amount of drinking water required is expected to double by 2030 in Dhaka while the region’s groundwater levels are falling by 2 to 3 metres each year. In response, the Bangladeshi government established the Dhaka Water Supply Project, which aims to diversify water intakes and in particular to augment the use of surface water by sourcing 80% of the water needed by Dhaka’s inhabitants from surface water (compared to 20% currently). The treatment plant will use rapid decantation and filtration technologies to treat its water.

A unique feature of this project is the construction of a major facility in a region subject to flooding and earthquakes. The entire facility has therefore been designed in particular to withstand the risks related to the region’s frequent earthquakes.

The design and complete construction of the facility – scheduled to take four years – will be followed by a three-year operation and maintenance phase. The two partners will ensure the gradual transfer of expertise to WASA employees.

The Veolia group is the global leader in optimized resource management which designs and provides water, waste and energy management solutions, contributing to the sustainable development of communities and industries. Through its three complementary business activities, Veolia helps to develop access to resources, preserve available resources, and to replenish them.

SUEZ is working on all 5 continents, supporting local authorities and industries in the service of an efficient and sustainable management of water resources, the treatment and recovery of waste and supporting customers in their response to environmental issues.