GCC states need to change procurement systems, approach on investments to improve project awards

Dubai set a March tender deadline for the 300-meter-long, 22-meter-wide signature Infinity Bridge, which is part of the larger Shindagha Corridor scheme that runs through Bur Dubai and Deira. (Courtesy Roads & Transport Authority)
Updated 19 February 2018
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GCC states need to change procurement systems, approach on investments to improve project awards

DUBAI: Countries in the six-member Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) should overhaul procurement systems and processes and take a different approach on capital investments to improve the region’s environment regarding project awards.
“Dubai has proven that it can be done successfully, and provides a model for how this can be implemented. The other GCC states must now rise to the challenge,” regional projects tracker MEED Projects said in one of its report on Monday.
The industry monitor noted that just $108 billion worth of projects were signed in the GCC last year, $10 billion less than in 2016, and hopes that rising oil prices and more public spending would translate into higher project expenditures were quashed when major pipelined projects failed to take off.
“There was no better illustration of the variability of the projects market between geographies and sectors than in Dubai’s performance last year. The emirate was the saving grace of the UAE market, and saw almost as much work awarded ($29 billion) as the next four largest regional markets combined,” MEED Projects said.
Overall, the UAE awarded $43.5 billion worth of contracts last year, higher than 2016 and 2015.
“Dubai’s performance for the year highlighted how markets can prosper regardless of the crude price. The GCC projects market does not have to be inextricably linked to oil, but what 2017 has shown is that untangling it from crude is proving to be more complex than anticipated,” MEED Projects added.
Nakheel this week signed a 4.2-billion dirham contract for the construction of Deira Mall, seen to be UAE’s largest in terms of leasable space, with United Engineering Construction. Groundbreaking would start by March and the project was expected to be completed in 2021.
Dubai also set a March tender deadline for the 300-meter-long, 22-meter-wide signature Infinity Bridge. The crossing will be built near to the mouth of the Creek and is part of the larger Shindagha Corridor scheme that runs through Bur Dubai and Deira.


Careem looks to raise up to $200 million in China

Updated 20 November 2018
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Careem looks to raise up to $200 million in China

  • Investment bank China International Capital Corporation (CICC) is advising Dubai-based Careem, but it was not immediately clear when or if a deal would be finalized
  • Careem said in October it had secured $200 million in a new funding round from existing investors

HONG KONG: Careem, Uber’s main Middle East rival, is looking at raising between $100 million and $200 million from Chinese investors, a source with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters.
Investment bank China International Capital Corporation (CICC) is advising Dubai-based Careem, but it was not immediately clear when or if a deal would be finalized, the source said, adding there was a lack of familiarity and interest among Chinese investors in Middle Eastern start-ups.
Beijing-based CICC and Careem both declined to comment.
Reuters reported on Monday that CICC and New York-based investment bank Jefferies were both advising Careem on potential investment options and capital raising, including a possible Middle East M&A deal with Uber.
Careem, which counts German car maker Daimler and China’s largest ride-hailing company DiDi Chuxing among its other backers, competes head-to-head with Uber in most of the major cities in the Middle East.
Careem said in October it had secured $200 million in a new funding round from existing investors, and that it expected to raise more to finance expansion plans.
That investment, combined with previous fund raising and company growth into new markets and segments, gave Careem an estimated valuation of more than $2 billion.
Reuters reported in March that Careem was in early talks to raise as much as $500 million.