North Field expansion to boost construction sector post-virus

January 19, 2021

A new COVID-19 Response Report (CRR) produced by Oxford Business Group (OBG), in partnership with AlJaber Engineering (JEC), looks in detail at the projects, led by the major expansion works planned for the North Field, that are expected to boost construction activity in Qatar as the pandemic eases.
The CRR provides in-depth analysis of the country’s response to COVID-19 in an easy-to-navigate and accessible format, focusing on key data and infographics relating to the socio-economic landscape.
In its coverage, OBG considers the key part that the ambitious North Field project will play in generating construction activity, increasing production of liquefied natural gas (LNG) and boosting the recovery from the pandemic. It also features details of other projects in the pipeline, which include the expansion of both Hamad International Airport and Hamad Port.
With the 2022 FIFA World Cup drawing nearer, OBG tracks progress on the infrastructure and hospitality projects that will be needed to meet the needs of the large influx of visitors expected for the major sporting event.
The challenges that Qatar’s construction sector has faced due to pandemic-related supply disruptions and social-distancing measures are also explored.
Licence-holders will find coverage of the growing importance of health, safety and environmental standards in the construction industry following the arrival of COVID-19, as evidenced in new labour laws introduced in August.
The report shines a spotlight on JEC’s expansion and performance over the years, charting the large-scale projects that the contractor has undertaken, which include the 2022 FIFA World Cup Al Thumama Stadium, the Doha Metro Project – Gold Line and Qatar Petroleum District. It also highlights the company’s decision to buck local trends by looking beyond the Qatari market, most notably at regional opportunities in oil and gas.
Osama Hadid, CEO, AlJaber Engineering, who is interviewed in the report, said that while infrastructure development will be less extensive than in the years leading up to the pandemic, oil, gas and military projects are expected to help activity pick up once again.
“The outlook for opportunities in the Qatari construction market is promising,” he said. “Contractors have borne the brunt of the problems created by the pandemic in the construction sector. We hope that, with vaccines becoming available in late 2020 or early 2021, the long-standing effects of the pandemic on the country’s construction market will be minimal.”
Jana Treeck, OBG’s Managing Director for the Middle East, said that prudent fiscal policies implemented over the years and LNG export wealth had helped Qatar to weather the worst of the pandemic, while plans to diversify the economy should help to better accommodate fluctuating natural gas prices.
“Construction has become a key driver of growth on the back of public infrastructure spending and the 2022 FIFA World Cup,” she said. “We expect a solid project pipeline that includes the strategic long-term expansion of the North Field to accelerate activity and carry the sector beyond 2022.”
The CRR on Qatar forms part of a series of tailored reports, which the global research and advisory company is currently producing with its partners, alongside other highly relevant, go-to research tools, including a range of country-specific COVID-19 Economic Impact Assessment articles and interviews.

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