Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) has organised a workshop on Effective Partnerships in cooperation with UK-based The Partnering Initiative (TPI).
The workshop, held at Grand Hyatt hotel in Dubai, supports DEWA’s commitment to establish long-term relationships with its partners, and train staff to be capable of managing these partnerships according to international best practices for their mutual benefit.
The workshop was inaugurated by HE Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD & CEO of DEWA. It was attended by HE Ahmed Buti Al Muhairbi, Secretary General of Dubai Supreme Council of Energy, a large number of DEWA’s partners from the public and private sectors, Executive Vice Presidents, Vice Presidents, the Partnership department, and other DEWA officials.
The workshop included two lectures by Todd Kirkbride, an expert in designing and implementing cross-sector partnerships, and Laura Johnson-Graham, a specialist in developing and implementing partnership strategies and building organisational capabilities at TPI. They discussed the power of partnership, the leading role of partnership, and successful partnership strategies.
In his keynote speech, Al Tayer welcomed DEWA’s partners and commended their role in DEWA’s accomplishments and its prominent position locally, regionally, and globally.
Two years ago, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, launched the Smart Dubai initiative to transform Dubai into the smartest city in the world. Since then, government and private organisations in Dubai have been striving to turn that vision into reality and we have started to see the results of these efforts. One of the key elements of smart cities is the close cooperation of all stakeholders, including urban developers, water, electricity, communications, transportation, educational, and healthcare service providers, and other government and private organisations.
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai has observed that, “Working as a team, everybody takes part in building the UAE. “At DEWA, we make sure that our partners have this spirit – the spirit of the ‘one team’ – the spirit of ‘partnership,’ which seeks to achieve the ultimate goal we look forward to achieving, which is the happiness of individuals and society as a whole. This spirit seeks to promote the position of the UAE and its global competitiveness. Successful partnerships do not seek to achieve individual successes, but look forward to achieving collective success for everyone’s benefit,” said Al Tayer.
Al Tayer noted that DEWA works with local and international partners from the public and private sectors in most of its major projects. These projects are implemented through contracts, based on the Independent Power Producer (IPP) model, or in collaboration with consultants and contractors. DEWA’s investments in the energy sector of approximately AED 60 billion over the next five years will enhance production of electricity, water, renewable energy, smart grids, and their transmission and distribution networks. The investments cover several projects, including the infrastructure costs for the Expo 2020 preparations, estimated at AED 2.6 billion.
“The major projects DEWA is implementing in cooperation with the private sector include the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, which is one of the largest renewable energy projects in the region, with a planned total capacity of 3,000 MW by 2030. The Hassyan clean coal power station will produce 1,200 MW, and is a key project due to be commissioned by 2020,” he added.
“DEWA has also launched three smart initiatives to support Smart Dubai. These are Shams Dubai to encourage tenants and building owners to install photovoltaic panels and produce electricity from solar energy, which will be connected and used inside buildings with the surplus going to the DEWA grid, Smart Applications and Meters, which focuses on using smart applications through smart meters and grids, which provide many advantages to customers, and the Green Charger to create the infrastructure and charging stations for electric vehicles to encourage their use in Dubai. DEWA has established 16 charging stations for Electric Vehicles in Dubai and will have 100 stations by the end of this year. These projects and initiatives will help to achieve the Smart Dubai vision as well as the Dubai Plan 2021, to establish Dubai as the preferred place to live, work and visit, as well as one of the world’s leading business centres,” added Al Tayer.
“Thanks to the contribution of our successful partnerships, DEWA has achieved several milestones globally. We have surpassed selected European and American companies in efficiency and reliability. DEWA reduced wastage in electricity transmission and distribution networks to about 3.26% compared to 6-7% in Europe and the United States,” Al Tayer said.
“The reduction of wastage in water systems is 9.1% compared with 15% in North America, demonstrating that DEWA is a global leader in reducing water losses. DEWA also achieved the best results in customer minutes lost per year at 4.9 minutes compared with 15 minutes registered by leading electricity utilities in the European Union. The UAE, represented by DEWA, ranks fourth globally and first in the Middle East and North Africa for getting electricity, according to the results of the Doing Business report issued by the World Bank in 2015, and for the second consecutive year,” noted Al Tayer.
“I am sure that the workshop today will lead to great results and further strengthen relations between DEWA and its partners, by identifying best practices and coming up with recommendations that would determine how best to strengthen our long-term cooperation to ensure the prosperity of not just our business, but those of our partners as well. I look forward to continuing our partnership for the benefit of our country by increasing its competitiveness and bringing happiness to all who live in this land, as well as achieving the vision of DEWA to become a sustainable innovative world-class utility,” concluded Al Tayer.
The workshop included a brainstorming session. Participants were divided into 9 groups. They discussed a number of topics including sustainability, corporate social responsibility, conservation of energy and water, research and development, risk management, smart applications, DEWA’s smart initiatives, and stakeholders’ happiness. The activity discussed developing existing partnerships with DEWA, identifying new partnership opportunities and the best ways to manage these partnerships according to international best practices. At the end of the workshop, the findings were shared with the other groups. The participants commended DEWA’s efforts to organise the workshop. They remarked that it achieved its objective in informing them about the latest partnership theories and best international practices.
The Partnering Initiative is a UK-based international non-profit organisation dedicated to driving collaboration among business, government, and NGOs for a sustainable future. For over a decade, TPI has developed theories and practices about partnering by supporting organisations from all sectors to partner effectively and strategically and building capacity with the training and necessary tools.