UAE construction industry will see moderate growth this year, mainly driven by Abu Dhabi, after the negative impact of the global economic downturn which burst Dubai's property bubble and badly affected its booming construction sector.
According to BMI's latest Infrastructure Report, it saw "a near zero growth" in the industry last year but BMI does "anticipate that 2011 will be the year the UAE's industry shakes off the effects of Dubai's downturn, and the value of the infrastructure and construction sector returns to a normalised growth trajectory."
The main driver of a return to growth in the industry will be the ambitious infrastructure investment programme being set by Abu Dhabi. BMI "expects UAE's construction industry recovery to pick up speed in 2011, reaching 2.7 per cent real growth," it said in its Q2 2011 report.
BMI believes that the main opportunities in the UAE construction sector for continued growth will be in the water, power and large industrial construction. The fundamental driver in these sectors will be Abu Dhabi implementation of the long-term Vision 2030.
BMI forecasts that the industry value will reach US$19.48 billion this year which will mainly be fuelled by projects in Abu Dhabi. Although Dubai will contribute through its various transport projects, including the delayed Green Line metro and the Al-Maktoum International Airport and the expansion of Dubai Airport.
In the long term BMI did state "that the double digit growth levels of heydays of the industry will not return, with construction industry value real growth averaging nearly four per cent per year between 2011 and 2020."