Regional News


September 2015

Hochtief ViCon wins Idris BIM deal

Hochtief ViCon has been awarded a contract to implement, manage and execute BIM (building information modelling) on the central section of the Inner Doha Re-sewerage Implementation Strategy (Idris MTS02).

The contract was signed with the SHP joint venture consisting of Al Sraiya Strabag for Roads and Infrastructure, Hochtief Solutions ME and Petroserv.

According to a company spokesman, ViCon will deliver BIM implementation and management services for the entire project duration supporting all construction phases. Its scope of work will also include a BIM execution plan together with a BIM modelling strategy.


Oryx to supply 2m tonnes aggregate

Fujairah-based Oryx Industries is set to supply Qatar Primary Materials Company (QPMC) with two million tonnes of quarry products to meet the growing demand in Qatar’s construction sector, according to a report. It signed a new offtake agreement with QPMC for the delivery of the quarry products, said The Peninsula report.

“We are seeing a strong resurgence in demand for construction projects across the GCC markets, nowhere more notably than in Qatar,” Bader Al Khashti, general manager, was quoted as saying.


Oman-Saudi road nearly complete

A road connecting Oman and Saudi Arabia is set to be completed by next month (October), according to a report. The road link will be of great advantage to those embarking on the Haj and Umrah pilgrimages, said the Saudi Gazette report.

The new road within Oman is around 160 km while the road on the Saudi side will be about 519 km, while the current distance between the countries, via UAE, is about 2,000 km, it said.

The project, which involves one border crossing point instead of four, is expected to boost trade and tourism between the two GCC neighbours and will ensure the quick delivery of products.


Omani fish market on track

Work on the much-awaited central fish market in Muttrah, Oman, is progressing according to schedule and is set to be ready by early next year, said a report by Oman Observer.

Upon completion, the state-of-the-art waterfront landmark will replace the existing building and offer visitors a relaxed shopping experience.

The new edifice will boast of a curved shape, textured concrete structural walls, and the beautiful, swirling aluminium and steel shading canopy will include areas for fish processing and sale, a vegetable market, meat market, cafe and a restaurant.


New Suez Canal inaugurated

The New Suez Canal was officially inaugurated in August with the opening of a new lane that now allows for simultaneous Northern and Southern vessel transit for the first time in its history. The $8.2-billion project involved the digging of another stretch of canal running parallel with the existing one for 35 km, as well as dredging and widening some of the rest.

The new canal, which can now handle two-way traffic for its entire 160-km length, will see a near 50 per cent increase in vessel traffic by 2023. Moreover, transit time for southbound vessels will be reduced by up to eight hours in total. More than 43,000 workers collaborated to complete the project within a calendar year.


Finances inked for Qatar logistics hub

Qatar’s Masraf Al Rayan bank agreed to finance to build the largest logistics project in the country’s south.

State-run Economic Zones Company (Manateq) and a committee of the Ministry of Economy and Commerce signed a deal for QR1.8 billion ($494.4 million) with the Islamic lender.

The development is located in Wakrah, about 20 km south of Qatar’s capital Doha.


Water Garden City project progresses

Bahrain’s Al Bilad Real Estate Investment Company and Al Namal Contracting Company have signed a contract for the construction of the first phase of a multi-million-dinar restaurants and villas project at Water Garden City in Seef.

The project includes 16 upscale restaurants, each consisting of three floors covering 100 sq m. It will also have two-storey villas overlooking the marina, each covering an area of 100 to 300 sq m and common facilities. Al Bilad also announced the building of the $30-million Residence Inn Marriott on the development by International Trading and Investment Company.


LP Building Products to enter GCC

LP Building Products, a leading manufacturer of quality engineered wood building materials, is set to enter the GCC market.

The building products company will offer a host of products, including LP SolidStart LVL (laminated veneer lumber) concrete form beams, to wholesalers as well as concrete formwork and shoring companies across the Middle East.

Al Huber, international sales manager, said: “With our expansion into this exciting new market, we will soon be able to provide SolidStart LVL to six new countries, meeting a high demand in a vastly growing region.

“We are eager to begin forming new relationships in the Middle East and fulfil the rising need for high quality, dependable concrete forming products.”



Dragon Mall ... a key component.

Dragon Mall ... a key component.

Dragon City to open by year-end


The Dragon City, a retail and wholesale development set in the southwest corner of Bahrain’s Diyar Al Muharraq, will open in December.

“The inauguration of the project will be part of festivities marking Bahrain’s National Day and the Bahraini-China Cultural Week,” said Chinamex vice-chairman Z J Kung

He said 780 shopping outlets would be complete by September 28, followed by registration procedures for Chinese companies to start their activities in Bahrain.


Egypt plans Suez economic zone

President Abdel Fattah El Sisi issued a decree establishing an economic zone for Egypt’s Suez Canal, the country’s state news agency said.

The decree establishes a 460-sq-km economic zone around the canal which, the government said, will be used to develop an international industrial and logistics hub that will attract foreign investment. Egypt expects the economic zone to eventually make up about a third of the country’s economy.


Koreans clinch $5.4bn mega deals

Five South Korean construction companies have won large-scale projects in the Middle East totalling $5.4 billion.

Daewoo Engineering and Construction (E&C), Hyundai E&C, Hyundai Heavy Industries, SK E&C, and Hanwha E&C said they had received letters of acceptance (LOA) on four packages with the Al Zour New Refinery Project (NRP) commissioned by the Kuwait National Petroleum Company (KNPC) between January and March of this year. The order is the fifth largest in South Korean construction history after a UAE nuclear power plant project ($18.6 billion), Bismayah New City project in Iraq ($10 billion), stage two of Libya’s Great Man-Made River ($6.4 billion), and the Roy Hill iron ore project in Australia ($5.8 billion).


Egypt to build 1,000 factories

Infrastructure work for the 1,000 factories project in New Cairo in Egypt is being completed, a top government official said, adding that obstacles facing small investors in the region have been removed.

Facilities equipment is being transferred to another area of the industrial zone after work was completed in the 1,000 factories area, in order to implement the rest of the facilities needed by the end of October; Minister of Housing Mostafa Madbouly was quoted as saying in a Daily News Egypt report.

About 70 per cent of the required facilities have been implemented.


Oman power sector to grow 11pc

Oman’s power sector, which has witnessed a boost of 10 per cent per annum, is estimated to grow by 11 per cent in 2020 on the weight of new developments, according to the Oman Observer.

Oman Power and Water Procurement Company (OPWP) said it intends to introduce new arrangements for energy and water through independent producers,.

These include introduction of an energy market in 2017 when long-term contracts signed earlier with power plants expire. They also include a more flexible approach in concluding new agreements for the purchase of power by OPWP in a bid to enhance competition.


Egypt to spend $38m on new road

Egypt is set to invest EGP300 million ($38 million) to implement the first phase of a new road linking the Assiut plateau with the Western Desert and Eastern Desert roads, a report said.

The first phase will see the completion of 22 km of the road, connecting the plateau with the Western and Eastern Deserts by a bridge over the River Nile, a Daily News Egypt report said, quoting Mohammed Nasser, head of the Central Agency for Reconstruction.

Nasser said that work on the first phase will begin during fiscal year 2015/2016, with investments of EGP50 million ($6.38 million).


Bahrain homes project 98pc complete

A housing project in Al Hunainiya, Bahrain, is 98 per cent complete, according to Housing Ministry housing projects assistant under-secretary Sami Abdullah Bu Hazza. He said the project was nearing completion and that distribution of the units would start after infrastructure issues were solved, including identifying additional entrances and exits.

The project is made up of 293 residential units on 15.32 hectares and includes open spaces, playgrounds, shops and mosques.


Qatar AC market to grow 13pc

A recent report has revealed that Qatar’s air-conditioner market is projected to grow at an annual rate of 13.42 per cent during 2015-21 as the construction market and especially the Fifa World Cup 2022 creates demand for the sector.

The country is renovating and building new stadiums and also would be installing powerful air-conditioners in entire stadiums to provide ambient temperature during the international sporting event.

According to 6Wresearch, Qatar country plans to build nine new stadiums and upgrade three, creating fresh demand for air-conditioners. High consumption of energy in Qatar has forced the government to put stringent regulations using energy-efficient systems.

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