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Atkins has been appointed by Hyundai Engineering and Construction Company (HDEC) to provide engineering design services for the $1.5bn Mirfa Independent Water and Power Project (IWPP) in Abu Dhabi.

Hyundai led a consortium that was awarded a $715.4m engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract to build the plant last year. It is working with Ansaldo Energia in Italy and Degremont to construct a power plant capable of generating 1,600MW of power and 238,665m3 of seawater per day.

The plant is due to be commissioned in phases throughout 2016 and 2017. Atkins' power business is providing civil design reviews and assistance in gaining building permits from the Western Region Municipality of Abu Dhabi, as well as helping to make sure designs confirm with Estidama sustainablility standards.

Phil Malem, managing director for Atkins’ power and renewables business, said: “This contract is a significant win for the team, and another major step towards growing Atkins’ energy business in the United Arab Emirates. We are looking forward to working with all of those involved on this exciting project.”

HDEC is building the plant for a public-private partnership developing the plant comprising Abu Dhabi Water and Electricity Authority (which has an 80% stake) and GDF Suez (20%).

It is the tenth IWPP to be developed in Abu Dhabi.