Utico powers up responsible development in RAK
Utico is the largest, full-service, private utility in the Middle East. It is one of the 27 companies under the umbrella of the Abu Dhabi-based Ghantoot Group, with business operations in both water and power provision. Its activities include generation, transmission, and distribution of power and water.
The company has a power production capacity of 120MW, and water production capacity of 30 million gallons per day. It also owns more than 350,000 square metres of transmission and distribution networks over five industrial parks, and it is the utility provider for two seaports and several hotels.
The company won the Best Corporate Social Responsibility award at this year’s RAK FTZ Business Excellence Awards, recognising a company that has demonstrated responsible business practices in favour of the environment and the community.
When Utico began its operations in RAK FTZ in 2005, it had 16 employees. That number has now jumped to more than 265, a credit to the company’s sound corporate development policies as well as the free zone’s business set-up and expansion benefits.
“RAK FTZ is one of the premier free zones locally and internationally,” said Richard Menezes, Executive Vice Chairman of Utico. “The fact that our company has grown so tremendously over the past 10 years is a testament to the support and strength of RAK FTZ, and shows the political and economic policies as well as the social support that the leadership of the emirate of Ras Al Khaimah provides to all its businesses and residents.”
Utico is currently investing more USD 500 million to set up a 270 MW coal power plant with carbon capture in RAK. It will be the first of its kind in the Middle East, and is aligned with the rapid growth of the emirate of Ras Al Khaimah. Additionally, the company recently obtained an environmental permit from the UAE Federal Ministry, another first in the Middle East.
Utico is also investing more than USD 300 million in a 40MW solar power facility and desalination plant that will produce 22 million gallons of potable water. The facility is at an advanced stage of development.
The company’s focus on sustainable utility development is a futuristic innovation model that will help the economy not only of the UAE but also other countries. With its continuing focus on emerging markets, for example, the company has recently acquired a majority stake in the largest desalination plant at Chennai, in India.