GCC Construction projects worth USD 2.3 trillion attract global industry players in Dubai for the Big 5 2018

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The 39th edition of Middle East’s leading international building and construction show was officially opened by Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and the Minister of Finance and Industry of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on November 26 and will run at the Dubai World Trade Centre until November 29. The Big 5 hosts five co-located events and high-level summits, more than 100 workshops, a Start-up City and thousands of construction products displayed by 2,500 exhibitors from around the world.

Today, Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and the Minister of Finance and Industry of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) officially inaugurated the 39th edition of The Big 5 International Building and Construction Show, which will run until November 29 at the Dubai World Trade Centre.

This year, five exhibitions run as part of The Big 5, creating one mega event for the entire construction life-cycle: HVAC R Expo – the new event dedicated to the HVAC R industry; The Big 5 Solar – bringing solar solutions for construction; the Urban Design & Landscaping Expo (UDLE) – the region’s only event dedicated to landscaping, infrastructure and urban development; The Big 5 Heavy – the leading event dedicated to infrastructure and heavy construction in the Middle East; and Middle East Concrete(MEC) – the region’s largest event dedicated to concrete.

Over 2,500 global exhibiting companies and more than 30 official country pavilions display the latest building solutions and innovative products at the event. The broad international participation, which is expected to cater to the needs of the regional construction industry, demonstrates a growing interest in the expanding GCC market.

According to The Big 5’s intelligence partner, BNC Network, over 23,000 construction projects are currently active in the GCC, and worth more than USD 2.3 trillion.

The urban construction sector has the highest number of projects (18,000), with the most significant segment coming from residential, commercial and hospitality developments. With the sector having expanded by 4% in terms of value and 15% in terms of total active projects in the first half of 2018, the outlook for the GCC construction industry remains positive.

Focus on innovation and technology

On its opening day, The Big 5 2018 introduced two new features that aim to advance the construction sector by embracing innovation and technology: the brand-new Live Innovation Zone, hosting a selection of the most innovative products that are shaking up the construction industry today, and The Big 5’s Start-Up City, presenting the next construction tech disruptors.

The event also hosted the first FutureTech Construction Summit themed “Empowering Innovation in the Construction Ecosystem”. Speakers from Virgin Hyperloop One, Microsoft, Saudi Aramco, Faithful+Gould, ASGC, AECOM, Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority, Meraas and Mont Hill presented some of the latest and most promising technologies, which will help the construction industry achieve higher productivity, greater sustainability and enhanced affordability.

Addressing the audience at the Futuretech Construction Summit, Josine Heijmans, Portfolio Director at dmg events, said: “In a world where innovation and technology are more and more crucial to remain competitive, the construction sector is still widely considered a late technology adopter. Yet, technology has an enormous potential within the sector.

“From Robotics and Artificial Intelligence to 3D Printing, from Virtual Reality to smart building and IT solutions, a variety of tech innovations have the power to shake up the construction industry today, to improve its productivity, and increase its sustainability and affordability.

“Innovation and technology are considered key elements also to realizing the UAE Vision 2021. It is therefore of essence for the regional construction sector to embrace innovation and the vast development opportunities offered by technological innovations.”

The Launch of the HVAC R Expo

The first day of the international building and construction show also saw the launch of a new event part of The Big 5 dedicated to the heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration (HVAC R) industry: the HVAC R Expo. As the HVAC R market in the UAE is expected to reach a value of $1.5 billion by 2019, the launch of the HVAC R Expo promises to help the construction industry move toward a greener and more sustainable future.

Supported by leading associations ASHRAE Falcon Chapter, AHRI, BSRIA and REHVA, the event hosts more than 200 exhibitors from around the globe, including major players like Zamil Industrial, TROX, Coolex, Fawaz, SKM Air Conditioning LLC, Finpower, Khansaheb and Technalco. Heijmans said: “We are extremely glad and proud of the huge support we are receiving from the HVAC R industry at a regional and a global level for the launch of HVAC R Expo. We are also extremely proud to be promoting best practices in the region while providing a vital platform for industry professionals to do business, network, learn and source innovative, energy efficient products.”    Dr. Omar Abdelaziz, ASHRAE Global Training Center Instructor, commented: “HVAC R Expo brings a much-needed exposure of the state-of-the-art to the GCC HVAC R industry. It provides an opportunity to learn about the newest commercial HVAC product offering for the GCC market with a special emphasis on hot climate conditions, while offering free-learning.”

Indeed, 20 CPD (continuing professional development) certified workshops run alongside the exhibition. The complimentary HVAC R Talks are delivered by some of the most prominent industry names and decision makers, the likes of Faisal Rashid, Director Demand Side Management at Supreme Council of Energy, and Chris Muller, Technical Director of Purafil Inc.

Also, training sessions delivered by the ASHRAE Global Training Center for Building Excellence run at the event providing participants with Continuing Education Credit and a Certificate of Attendance from ASHRAE. These Continuing Education hours may be applied toward maintenance of LEED professional credentials as well.

Top features on the next three days

A wide education agenda is back this year at The Big 5. The popular CPD-certified and free to attend workshops run in four dedicated theatres throughout the four days of the event as BIM Talks, Architecture Talks, Project Management Talks and Design Talks.

  •  On November 27:

The Big 5 Solar will host the Global Solar Leaders’ Summit under the Patronage of the Ministry of Energy & Industry, United Arab Emirates. Following the topical theme ‘Solar Solutions for Construction’, the summit will feature the GSLS Award Ceremony to celebrate achievements towards a more sustainable and efficient footprint through solar solutions.

The Roads and Transport Authority, Dubai (RTA) in partnership with British Standards Institution (BSI) will award BIM standard certification to major clients at the RTA Innovation in BIM Summit, held at The Big 5 Heavy. The summit will focus on pushing forward the adoption of BIM technology in the UAE.

  • On November 28:

The Big 5 will launch its first Women in Construction Seminar & Awards in association with Mott MacDonald. Awards for Women in Leadership, and Next Generation Woman of the Year will be announced at the end of the Seminar.

The Urban Design & Landscaping Expo will host the Urban Design & Landscaping Summit, themed “Promoting greener, healthier and more sustainable built environments with best practices in urban design and landscaping”. The Summit will also feature the Product Innovation Award promoting commercial potential, creativity and innovation in urban design and landscaping.

In partnership with Dubai South Business Park, The Big 5’s How to do Business in the UAE Seminar will provide business intelligence to exhibitors and visitors interested in navigating the burgeoning UAE construction market, hosting speakers from Expo 2020 Dubai and Dubai Customs among others. 

The Start-up City will feature The Big 5 Pitch Competition: selected start-ups in the construction industry will compete to win the award from The Big 5 as most innovative Start-Up for 2018.

Organised by dmg events, The Big 5 2018 is open from 11:00 am to 7:00 pm daily, from 26 to 29 November at the Dubai World Trade Centre.

November 26 (Monday), 2018 |

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