Qatar’s construction sector evolving with new technologies

April 13, 2022

Doha: Qatar’s construction industry is growing rapidly. The country offers new business opportunities for the local industries and SMEs. There have been many initiatives by the government to support them, said an official.

Eng. Ahmad Ali Al Ansari, Senior project engineering advisor to the permanent office of Ashghal discussed the topic ‘Re-engineering Construction Supply Chains - A Proactive Approach’ on the sidelines of the launch of ‘National Product Week’ which covered the supply chain management in Qatar. It focused on the local construction industry and shed light on the changing environment of the supply chain and the increasing demand for high standard and quality.

Al Ansari illustrated some examples of procurement methods for delivering the projects. He noted that there are pros and cons with each method. Speaking about supply chain he noted that “we are primary involved in selection and approval of architects and consultants. Besides that, we also evaluate, select and approve contractors, sub-contractors and specialized service providers and suppliers of various materials.”

Over the past few years, the ecosystem has changed a lot, the construction environment has evolved rapidly due to various reasons as the market is advancing and evolving with new technologies and disruptive technologies have been introduced into the construction industry such as AI and virtual reality.

He stressed that when it comes to value chain positioning, “We are heavily involved in encouraging the local supply chain to invest in better industries to cater and serve public works and projects. There have been many initiatives introduced by the government to support local industries and it is one of our primary interests to support the local economy. We are interested in supporting the local SMEs to give them the opportunities to get involved and participate in various supply operations in our projects.”

“We are currently working on transition from being construction project focused to asset management focused as all the assets we have been planning and delivering over the past several years need to have proper operations and maintenance. So, for that reason we are currently developing various opportunities pertaining to the market for asset and facility management,” he added.

Speaking about the new approach of standardisation in the construction methodology Al Ansari said “When we standardise the process of the projects it will ensure and maintain consistency in project control and delivery. We also have Ta’sheel initiative for registering and pre-qualifying local manufacturers to supply materials and services for Ashghal projects.”

The government is very interested in developing a new business opportunity for the local industries. “There are many opportunities we can develop and put in the market as investment opportunities for local investors and industries. We are currently working on developing integrated project delivery which is primary focused on teamwork. We are working hard to partner with various supply chain in the market to achieve the common goal and objectives of our projects.”

He added, “It is important to have internal and external stakeholders involved in delivering our projects throughout the project phases. We deliver all our projects based on the latest guidelines and standards required by the green house requirements. It involves Global Sustainability Assessment System (GSAS) certification for some of the buildings are considered in our design work.”

Ashghal is the largest government entity to deliver infrastructure projects and public buildings which covers both the economic and the social infrastructure. “The economic infrastructure covers the main highways, expressways and the inner-city roads and social infrastructure covers public buildings of all kinds whether it is healthcare facilities, education, or worship and other municipal or public projects such as public parks, fish markets. Besides that, we are also heavily involved in managing our own assets which covers drainage networks and road maintenance,” he said.

“In our operations we use a lot of services and key materials in delivering our projects. We use aggregates, sand, ready-mix concrete and fill materials, bitumen and asphalt, reinforcement and other steel works, underground services materials, street finishing works. We use services of architects and consultants and with service of general construction contractors and specialised sub-contractors,” he added.

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