Big 5 opens: Mega projects and market recovery entices industry

Updated 25 November 2013
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Big 5 opens: Mega projects and market recovery entices industry

Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, deputy ruler of Dubai, officially inaugurated The Big 5, Middle East Concrete and PMV Live 2013 at the Dubai World Trade Center.
With a history of more than 33 years in the region, the event has grown 10 percent this year, and brings together more than 2,500 exhibitors from 65 countries with an anticipated 60,000 construction industry professionals on site over the course of four days.
Professionals from the construction industry gather together to showcase and source new, innovative and sustainable products, see the latest trends, get an update on regulations impacting design and build, and identify new markets and business opportunities.
Opening alongside The Big 5 will be Middle East Concrete, the largest event for the concrete industry showcasing innovative concrete products, technical seminars and live product demonstrations, as well as PMV Live, an interactive event for the plant, machinery and vehicle industry highlighting the latest heavy vehicles and related equipment throughout the four day event.
Andy White, group event director for The Big 5 2013, said the event continues to grow with each edition and is still considered the region’s most important event for the building and construction industry.
“This year The Big 5 is once again giving architects, interior designers, contractors, developers and all other construction professionals, access to the full spectrum of products. Our educational program has also expanded this year giving our visitors access to hundreds of free seminars, workshops and regulatory updates,” he was quoted as saying in a press release received here.
As part of The Big 5, international and regional experts will be addressing industry issues such as sustainability and low energy emitting materials, project management in construction, building interior trends, façade design, fire safety and managing aging structural asset portfolios at over 100 free to attend seminars running throughout the event. Best in class studies will be presented during the Sustainable Design & Construction Conference including the LEED Platinum rated DEWA building and the futuristic White Sky iHouse.
Dubai Municipality will also be presenting on the update to its Green Building Codes, due to go live from January 1, at a free to attend seminar on the 25 November.
This year’s event also includes a new arena specifically dedicated to building interiors, bringing together a wide range of products and services catering to this sector of the industry.
The new arena provides a selective platform for this increasingly influential market segment, currently worth around $10 million within the GCC.
In addition to the new arena, the exhibition will be further broken down into product specific sectors, including HVAC, Coatings, Adhesives & Sealants, Kitchens & Bathrooms, Windows & Doors, Steel, Marble, Slate & Ceramics, Water Technology and General Construction. The show ends on Thursday.


Saudi stocks receive landmark emerging markets upgrade from MSCI

Updated 21 min 32 sec ago
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Saudi stocks receive landmark emerging markets upgrade from MSCI

  • Market authorities in Saudi Arabia have introduced a series of reforms in the past 18 months
  • MSCI’s Emerging Market index is tracked by about $2 trillion in active and global funds

LONDON: Saudi Arabian equites are poised to attract up to $40 billion worth of foreign inflows, following a landmark decision by index provider MSCI to include the Kingdom’s stocks in its widely tracked Emerging Markets index.

"MSCI will include the MSCI Saudi Arabia Index in the MSCI Emerging Markets Index, representing on a pro forma basis a weight of approximately 2.6% of the index with 32 securities, following a two-step inclusion process," the MSCI said in a statement late on Wednesday night Riyadh time.

“Saudi Arabia’s inclusion in MSCI’s EM Index is a milestone achievement and will likely bring with it significant levels of foreign investment,” Salah Shamma, head of investment for MENA at Franklin Templeton Emerging Markets Equity, told Arab News. 

“It is a recognition of the progress Saudi Arabia has made in implementing its ambitious capital markets transformation agenda. The halo effect of such a move will be felt across the stock exchanges of the entire Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).”

Market authorities in Saudi Arabia have introduced a series of reforms in the past 18 months to bring local capital markets more in line with international norms, including lower restrictions on international investors, and the introduction of short-selling and T+2 settlement cycles.

Such reforms prompted index provider FTSE Russell to upgrade the Kingdom to emerging market status in March, opening the country’s stocks up to billions worth of passive and active inflows from foreign investors.

MSCI’s Emerging Market index is tracked by about $2 trillion in active and global funds. The inclusion of Saudi stocks in the index, alongside FTSE Russell’s upgrade, is forecast to attract as much as $45 billion of foreign inflows from passive and active investors, according to estimates from Egyptian investment bank EFG Hermes. 

The upgrade announcement was widely expected by the region’s investment community, following a similar emerging markets upgrade announcement by fellow index provider FTSE Russell in March. 

“MSCI index inclusion will be a historic milestone for the Saudi market as it will allow for sticky institutional money to make an entry in 2019 which will help deepen the market,” said John Sfakianakis, director of economic research at the Gulf Research Center in Riyadh.