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INTERMAT Middle East and Arabian Construction Week opens

Arabian Construction Week, one of the most significant construction events in the Middle East region and INTERMAT Middle East, the second largest construction sector exhibition worldwide, started yesterday at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) in Abu Dhabi, UAE.

The opening of the three-day event was led by H.E. Engineer Ahmad Mohammed Shareef, Undersecretary of the Department of Municipal Affairs, Abu Dhabi. As the countries in the Middle East region continue to invest heavily in construction projects, their consistently impressive rates of economic growth have led to immense building and infrastructure projects, and industrial development.

According to Deloitte Middle East's GCC Powers of Construction 2010 report, the UAE has 36 per cent (US$958 billion worth) of total construction projects in the region, and is expected to see its construction industry grow by a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9.6 per cent between 2010 and 2014. KSA, on the other hand, currently has a 38 per cent share of the total construction projects in the region, and is expected to launch contracts worth US$86 billion in 2011.

Currently, the Kingdom has US$624 billion worth of projects planned or underway. Qatar has a 15 per cent share, and the country has the biggest growth potential as its CAGR from 2010 to 2014 is estimated to reach 12 per cent. Additionally, Qatar will host the 2022 World Cup, where it has pledged investments of up to US$75 billion for infrastructure, public facilities, security services and products, sports facilities, tourism, communications and transportation to manage the event.

The Arabian Construction Week consists of three dedicated trade shows - Green Building Middle East for sustainable construction solutions, Future Build Middle East for Innovative construction products and Civil Engineering Middle East highlighting major infrastructure developments.

The Infrastructure Summit will focus on key issues regarding the construction of roads, railway, schools and ports. The Climate Control Summit will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of district cooling systems versus standalone systems, highlighting the design, cost and implementation of mega projects across the GCC.

In addition to the summits, the Abu Dhabi Department of Municipal Affairs will host two workshop Series ? Building Codes & Regulations and Environmental Health and Safety Management Systems. The Emirates Green Building Council will host a focus day on the theme 'Abu Dhabi: Regulations & Assessment Tools ? Their Application and Implementation,' which will bring together leading industry players and regulatory authorities to network and share ideas and strategies to promote sustainable practices.

Christopher Hudson, Managing Director, Clarion Events Middle East, said: "With the launch of Arabian Construction Week and INTERMAT Middle East, future industry leaders and professionals have the potential to learn where the sector is heading in the Middle East region through conferences held by distinguished global speakers. Last year, 93 per cent of visitors to Arabian Construction Week had purchasing power and 64 per cent placed orders directly with exhibitors during the three days with an average value order in excess of US$410,000 across all orders. We expect these numbers to increase over the next few days."

Held alongside Arabian Construction Week is INTERMAT Middle East, where construction companies and government officials will view the latest machinery at this exhibition for superior quality builds. The first edition of INTERMAT Middle East, with the support of the Algerian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, welcomes Algeria as the official country partner. A delegation of leading construction companies from Algeria has been invited to attend the event.

Furthermore, there will be two conferences, one of which will present the Algerian five-year US$286 billion investment plan on March 29, 2011. The other will consist of discussions on the latest technological products, methods and advancements to improve crane productivity and safety on major construction sites on March 30, 2011.

Maryvonne LANO?, Exhibition Manager, INTERMAT Middle East, said: "Arabian Construction Week and INTERMAT Middle East uniquely complement each other. The interest of a green Middle East and the investment brought in by countries, including Algeria's five-year US$286 billion infrastructure spending plan make these events the place to be for companies and professionals looking to do business."