Kingdom executes $300bn worth of projects defying regional recession

The presentation organized by the German-Saudi Arabian Liaison Office for Economic Affairs (GESALO) in Riyadh.
Updated 28 September 2016
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Kingdom executes $300bn worth of projects defying regional recession

RIYADH: Defying the global and regional trends of recession, Saudi Arabia is currently executing projects worth $300 billion, said Fahad Mohammed Al-Hammady, chairman of the National Committee for Contractors at the Council of Saudi Chambers (CSC).
The Saudi government is also supporting several projects, while it is reviewing a large number of projects also.
“Whatever the case may be, a better future for construction section is anticipated,” said Al-Hammady, while speaking at a presentation organized by the German-Saudi Arabian Liaison Office for Economic Affairs (GESALO) in Riyadh.
The event was organized in cooperation with the CSC and the Germany’s Messe Munchen to introduce the world’s leading trade fair for architecture, materials and systems called ‘BAU Trade Fair’.
This trade fair, to be attended by a large number of Saudi exhibitors and visitors, will be held in the German city of Munich from Jan. 16 to 21.
A German delegation led by Mirko Arend, deputy director of Germany-based Messe Munchen and Oliver Oehms, Gesalo delegate, made the presentation.
Mark Pey, the newly-appointed general manager for Lufthansa, spoke about the airline’s services.
Referring to the current situation of the construction and contracting sector, Al-Hammady said that “the situation will become better in near future.”
Al-Hammady said that he looks forward for cooperation between the Kingdom and Germany in construction sector within the framework of the Saudi Vision 2030.
Despite the regional economic recession, the spending on projects are still continuing in the Gulf states including the Kingdom, he added.
In fact, the GCC’s construction community should expect that the construction business will bounce back in 2017.
This view has also been supported by Ben Hughes, director of capital projects at Deloitte Middle East, according to a report.
Hughes also noted that the region is tracking comparatively well with the relatively buoyant US economy.
“Clearly, there’s been a slowdown of project awards across the Gulf, and that’s a result of governments undertaking spending reviews,” Hughes has been quoted as saying.
In his presentation, Arend also spoke about the construction sector in his country, and made comparison between the Kingdom and Germany.

German BAU fair

Oehms, on his part, also gave details of the German BAU fair that will present “practice-oriented innovations and interdisciplinary solutions for commercial and residential construction and interior work for both new-buildings and renovation.”
Referring to Lufthansa operations on Saudi-German sector, Mark said: “Lufthansa German Airlines operates 24 weekly flights from Saudi Arabia providing a seamless connection between the key cities of the Kingdom and the airline’s hubs in Frankfurt and Munich.”
With these convenient connections, Lufthansa continues its long standing tradition of facilitating the closest of ties between the business communities of Germany and Saudi Arabia, he added.
Operating from Frankfurt and Munich, Europe’s most punctual hubs, Lufthansa offers business and leisure travelers from the Kingdom a global network with over 200 destinations in 76 countries.
Passengers from the Kingdom will find seamless connections throughout the Lufthansa network including those to the US and Canada with 20 destinations offered from Frankfurt, making Lufthansa the leader in linking the Middle East with the North Atlantic’s most important financial centers.


Funds managing $2 trillion urge cement makers to act on climate impact

A general view of Gulf Cement Company in Ghalilah, Ras al Khaimah, United Arab Emirates July 16, 2019. (REUTERS)
Updated 14 min 44 sec ago
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Funds managing $2 trillion urge cement makers to act on climate impact

  • The cement industry produces 7 percent of the world’s carbon dioxide emissions, according to the International Energy Agency, meaning that if it were a country, it would be the third largest emitter, behind the US and China

LONDON: European funds managing $2 trillion in assets called on cement companies to slash their greenhouse gas emissions on Monday, warning that a failure to do so could put their business models at risk.
Some asset managers are ramping up engagement with heavy polluters to demand a faster transition to a cleaner economy.
“The cement sector needs to dramatically reduce the contribution it makes to climate change,” said Stephanie Pfeifer, CEO of the Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change, which has more than 170 members, mainly European pension funds and asset managers. “This is ultimately a business-critical issue for the sector,” Pfeifer said in a statement.
The group said investors had written to cement or construction materials companies including Ireland’s CRH, Franco-Swiss group LafargeHolcim and France’s St. Gobain to demand they achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050.
They also noted that Germany’s HeidelbergCement had already adopted the target. The funds urged all cement companies to align themselves with the 2015 Paris agreement to combat global warming, engage with policymakers to ensure an orderly transition to a low carbon economy, and increase their reporting of climate risk.
“Construction materials companies may ultimately risk divestment and lack of access to capital as an increasing number of investors seek to exclude highly carbon-intensive sectors from their portfolios,” said Vincent Kaufmann, CEO of the Ethos Foundation.

FASTFACT

The cement industry produces 7 percent of the world’s carbon dioxide emissions, according to the International Energy Agency.

Signatories collectively manage assets worth $2 trillion and include Aberdeen Standard Investments, BNP Paribas Asset Management, Sarasin & Partners and Hermes EOS.
Although funds are increasingly engaging with companies from airlines to carmakers on emissions, few are calling for the systemic transformation of the global economic system that scientists increasingly argue is needed to prevent runaway climate breakdown.
The cement industry produces 7 percent of the world’s carbon dioxide emissions, according to the International Energy Agency, meaning that if it were a country, it would be the third largest emitter, behind the US and China.
With climate campaigners traditionally focused on fossil fuel companies, the European cement sector has received comparatively little scrutiny until recently.
On Tuesday, police arrested six climate activists from civil disobedience group Extinction Rebellion at a protest aimed at disrupting a site in east London belonging to London Concrete, a unit of LafargeHolcim.
In June last year, a report from think-tank Chatham House concluded that although there was no “silver bullet” to reduce emissions from cement, it should be possible to deploy a range of policies and technologies to achieve deep decarbonization.