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Made in Germany

Europe's biggest economy has strong commercial ties with the GCC

ANALYSIS, Materials

The size and strength of Germany’s industrial and manufacturing industries and its competitiveness as an exporter means it is logical that the country should target such a fast-growing region as the GCC.

For many years Europe’s largest economy has found the six countries a fertile market for business across a number of sectors, and this has grown in line with the overall drive in the region towards economic diversification.

The country was the largest trade partner with GCC in 2009, with exports valued at EUR13.5bn, though this fell from EUR17.288bin the previous year, according to Eurostat.

It is also the biggest trade partner with the UAE, with EUR7.58bn flowing into the country in 2010, according to statistics from AHK. Further, Dr Eckart Woertz at the Gulf Research Centre estimated in 2008 that the Germany accounted for around 6% of the UAE’s imports.

In the construction industry, the business ties are extensive. Exhibitions such as The Big 5 in Dubai and Project Qatar in Doha showcase a burgeoning section of German companies as a permanent fixture, all under the ubiquitous ‘made in Germany’ banner.

Companies such as BASF have developed extensive production facilities in the region for their construction- and climate-specific products.

German consultants are involved with, or are bidding for, some of the biggest infrastructure projects in the Gulf.

Last month, the Abu Dhabi Department for Economic Development and the German Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Development signed a letter of intent at the Hannover Messe to co-operate on development, promotion and operation of Khalifa Industrial Zone Abu Dhabi (Kizad) and Khalifa Port.

HE Mohammed Omar Abdullah, Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (DED) Undersecretary, commented that “it is the formation of partnerships like this that highlight the development in the relationship between the UAE and Germany.”

Khaled Salmeen Al Kawari, executive vice-president of Kizad, added: “We are very keen on growing the trade relations with Germany and the UAE.”

German Railway Consult is another example of the focus that Germany has on the region.

The company is a consortium of four German engineering firms specially formed to bid to consult Qatar Railway Development Company on the tendering for the separate packages for the construction of the cross-country rail network.

Trade bodies that help forge ties between German and Arab companies are also seeing an increase in their workload. Ghorfa Arab-German Chamber of Commerce and Industry, which promotes the mutual interests of German companies and Arab countries and companies, is now into its 35th year, and is seeing a greater number of requests for information.

“There are 22 Arab countries represented with an equal number of Germans represented on the board,” says Kariem El-Ali, a consultant for the GCC nations and Yemen for the body. “So the key is supporting the member countries and take part in trade shows and organising big conferences.
There is a big one in June and every year a different Arab country is host. This is the 14th time that it has met.”

El-Ali was speaking from The Big 5 Conference in Jeddah, the first time that the annual show took place outside Dubai – a reflection of the great interest in the Saudi market and an opportunity for companies to learn more about German suppliers and services.

“Most of the questions [from German businessmen] relate to how you would found a company. Normally they are trying to enter the market and need an agent,” he said.

“Most of the companies here already have an agent though some do not. The second step would then be to attend exhibitions. Another step would perhaps be to send a delegation from the company from Germany to the GCC.”

HOCHTIEF ViCon
Hochtief ViCon is a leading provider of business processes and technology management for virtual design and construction. It aims to reduce project risks, costs and execution time by ‘building digitally first’.

Its core business is managing Building Information Modelling (BIM). BIM is the process of creating 3D models, adding information to them and using them for many different purposes.

Implemented correctly, BIM vastly improves communication, cooperation, simulation and helps optimise a project throughout its entire lifecycle.

Hochtief ViCon enables project owners to reap all the benefits of this sophisticated technology. Standard BIM implementations focus on technology, and bring benefit to particular project participants.

In addition to this, the company ensures companies have the right policies in place, streamlined processes and educated participants. This comprehensive approach ensures that the project benefits as a whole, in addition to the contractors.

A BIM manager supports your project on site. He helps manage the project by ensuring that transparent and reliable information is available when needed. He co-ordinates all matters concerning the digital 3D model created for your project. His focus is facilitating processes that lead to the successful completion of the project.

The advice the company offers to its clients’ projects is software-independent. It helps each project choose the most efficient software technology. Its established network of BIM suppliers worldwide helps to fill in gaps in your project’s capacity.

A revolution in the construction industry, BIM is expected to see strong growth in the next three years. The Middle East, and especially Qatar, demands the latest technologies such as BIM to support their ambitious construction projects.

Using BIM is not enough: people here want to become the leaders in these new methods. Hochtief ViCon helps its clients stay one step ahead.

Hochtief ViCon Qatar is one of the most experienced BIM consultants in the Middle East. It is currently involved in a number of projects, including the Lusail City Development (Doha, Qatar) and the Nile Corniche Project (Cairo, Egypt). From its Middle East and Europe offices, it supports both infrastructure and building projects.

Contact us to see the company’s amazingly simple management solutions. Hochtief ViCon Qatar WLL, T +974 4457-6878, e-mail vicon@hochtief.de or visit www.hochtief-vicon.com

Audax
Based on more than 20 years’ experience in the field of construction chemicals, Audax specialises in individual solutions for the building industry.

Under the brand name Renitherm, the German company offers innovative intumescent coatings for the passive protection of steel, wood and electric cables.

Many projects worldwide feature safe protection by Renitherm. A full line of tests and approval procedures guarantees comprehensive fire protection according to exactly defined criteria. Audax fully complies with the requirements of the EN ISO 9001 standard.

The main purpose of Renitherm fire protection coatings is maintaining the resistance time of the load-bearing structure of a building as long as possible in order to allow people to escape the danger zone, or so that they can be rescued.

Up to 120 minutes fire-resistance time is achieved. This is the result of long-time experience combined with ongoing research and development.

Renitherm PMS/PMA for the protection of steelwork
In the event of fire, a steel structure does not burn, but it loses its stability after only a few minutes. Therefore steel must be prevented from reaching its critical temperature of 500°C under full loading for as long as possible. The main aim of using Renitherm PMS/PMA is to win time in order to save people and extinguish the fire.

Renitherm PMW for the protection of woodwork
Timber is readily combustible and therefore at risk from destruction by heat and flames. With Renitherm PMW, the flammability of wood is reduced verifiably, and thus the spread of fire is prevented or retarded.

Renitherm PMC for the protection of electric cables
Due to their specific material properties, almost all electric cable sheathing as an inherently high fire risk, especially in buildings with a high level of technology. Renitherm PMC offers efficient and environment-friendly protection for cable sheathings.

For more details, visit www.renitherm.com, or contact Audax-Keck GmbH at T +49 70 51/ 16 25-0, e-mail info@audax.de or visit www.audax.de
Sales director construction markets Friedhelm Köhnen can be contacted at f.koehnen@audax.de

ThyssenKrupp GfT Bautechnik
Give us a brief description of your company and its main focus areas
ThyssenKrupp GfT Bautechnik is one of the world’s leading integrated suppliers of marine and civil engineering solutions.

What are your main products and services?
We supply piling sections, machinery and equipment and provide our customers with all-inclusive service: sale, hire and instalment purchase of sheet piling, driving, extracting, drilling and press equipment, anchor equipment, trench shoring products and flood protection systems.
ThyssenKrupp GfT Bautechnik is the partner of choice for building owners, engineers and building contractors when it comes to competent advice, integrated solutions developed in our own engineering bureau, spare parts service and customer service.

What are some of your latest developments?
The new HOESCH 2607 sheet pile section is a well-thought-out addition to our range of products – with many obvious advantages: The off-centre interlock increases the section modulus and hence the load-carrying capacity of the pile.

The interlock is located in the zone of minimum shear force and therefore single piles can be used without having to reduce the section modulus.

A shear stress analysis is unnecessary. The interlocks can accommodate higher tensile forces, which prevents declutching. The generous width ensures fast driving progress. The generous height of the section results in a more stable pile and ensures less deflection.

We are in a run of development in the vibratory hammer technology especially the range of the variable, high-frequent vibrators. There will be a new product development in a few month…we promise you!

What major projects have your company been involved in?
A small abridgement of our projects we have been involved: Container Terminal 4 Bremerhaven, Germany, Headquarter from ThyssenKrupp AG, Essen, Germany, Wind Park “alpha ventus” North Sea, Germany, Reconstruction of Quay Al Hidd, Bahrain, MOSE Flood Protection Project Venice, Italy, Sihwa-Lake Tidal Power Plant Project, Korea, Flood Protection Blackpool, Great Britain, Port of Bautino Kazakhstan, Russia and so on.

What are your biggest opportunities and challenges?
We see Dubai as a strategic hub in Middle East from where we can supply important markets with our high-quality products. Our warehouse in the Jebel Ali Free Zones opens the local market for the supply of steel pilings.

Contact Stefanie Bartels, T +49 (201) 1883770, stefanie.bartels@thyssenkrupp.com.

Geze
Setting the global standard for advanced door and window technology is Geze, a family-owned German company founded in 1863 that continues to invest millions of Euros in research, development and manufacturing of innovative solutions.

Barrier-free functionality, flexible usage, safety, sustainability and an integrated design theme are at the forefront when it comes to the manual and automatic door systems produced by Geze.

The company believes that its partners – the architects, consultants and developers – are integral to the design of any product it develops.

“We always consult our partners for the introduction of any product in the region to ensure that we offer them the best possible solutions to meet their every increasing need,” says Geze Middle East MD Charles Constantin.

With the focus now shifting to truly innovative and sustainable building technologies that meet both high safety and efficiency standards, Geze provides the answer to our growing safety needs with its new RWA technology that combines safety and design with preventative fire protection in what Geze terms ‘Rauch und WärmeAbzugsanlagen’ in German, or known by its abbreviation of RWA.

“At GEZE, building safety means system safety, and we are presenting new integrated safety systems to manage complex tasks concerning escape and rescue routes,” says Constantin.

Explaining its working, he says that the RWA openings at the top of the building are operated by electromechanical drives. Smoke gases rise thermally and can escape through these openings at the very outset.

The required intake openings in the lower parts of the building reinforce this process through compensation of mass flow, enabling people to leave a building quickly and safely in the event of a fire.

As building regulations and fire prevention legislation are becoming increasingly stringent, there is a greater need to get smoke out of protected escape routes as quickly as possible, so as to allow people out and firefighters in.

“This is of utmost importance as in 95% of fire-related cases, deaths occur not from the fire but from inhalation of smoke,” says Constantin.

The Geze smoke, heat and window ventilation systems are modular and can be customised. Geze Middle East is currently installing its RWA technology at the $11.5bn Princess Noura bint AbdulRahman University for Women in Riyadh.

Contact Shakir Syed, T +971 (4) 8833112, s.syed@geze.ae

Wago
It began with an idea. Since 1951, Wago’s plan for electrical wiring solutions has been to move beyond screw connections and invest in developing spring connection technologies.

Since Wago’s foundation in 1951, the shareholders have been committed to develop spring connection technologies (screw-less).

It has been a straight road to success ever since. This technology is still regarded as the international standard for significantly enhancing the wiring of electrical and automation components.

In the Middle East Region, Wago used to work with partners within the GCC and other Middle East countries until 2009, when the Wago Middle East office was established.

The idea was to get closer to the company’s partners and customers in order to serve them better by having its own warehouse with the required stock of all fast-moving items, and also having the expertise to support the clients technically whenever needed directly.

Wago is a manufacturer of electrical interconnection and automation-related systems and sub-systems.

This includes all types of electrical wires, connectors, terminal blocks for all electrical applications, electronics devices such as relays, power supplies and industrial switches and also remote I/O control systems for industrial automation and building automation applications, in addition to many other related products and solutions.

All WAGO products are based on spring technology for connecting wires, offering the advantage of being maintenance-free, with much faster installation and highly secure and safe connections.

Wago’s motto is ‘innovative connection’, which imparts the fact that innovation is its strength. It is always coming up with new developments to match the market’s need for up-to-date products that comply with the required standards.

For example, it is currently developing new ethernet controllers (PLCs) with a redundant port for communication to fit for more applications (750 Series), new transformer isolated barriers (Jumplflex Series).

Contact Faisal Salem, Wago Middle East FZC, T +971 (6) 5579920, F +971 (6) 5579921, www.wago.ae, faisal.salem@wago.com

RAN GmbH
The strength behind RAN GmbH is its strong core of construction professionals, many with lifelong experience and expertise. This German company, with a base in the UAE, specialises in concrete machinery in particular.

“The Middle East region is a very important market to the company as a whole,” says sales manager Thorsten Remmel.

RAN’s product line-up comprises concrete pumps, concrete mixers and concrete mixer pumps, concrete batching plants, head trucks, cement silo trailers and all kinds of construction machines, plus all relevant spare parts.

“In addition to new equipment, we can also deliver secondhand machines direct from the manufacturers, complete with service and new boom certificates,” says Remmel.

Of particular interest to the GCC construction market is the company’s highly-effective 12m3 mixer on a 44t chassis In terms of the latest trends and developments, Remmel comments that while all new trucks manufactured in Europe already feature Euro 4 or 5 compliant low-emission engines, these are still not available in the GCC.

“It is important that the latest technology is standardized across global markets in order to maximise its benefits and advantages.”

Remmel says that RAN is determined to bring the latest technology to the GCC, having already sold “a lot of newer machines with Euro 4 engines, and these have been working daily without any difficulties. So in my opinion the region is not closed to new technologies.”

RAN is active throughout the GCC. An example of a latest contract is the delivery of three concrete pumps (M52, M46 and M42) with a Stetter semi-mobile M2 concrete batching plant, together with generator plus wheel loader, to a major project in Saudi Arabia.

“Our main opportunities are our knowledge of the market in the GCC and our experience, combined with the increasing demand of customers for quality machinery, even if it is secondhand,” concludes Remmel.

For further information, contact Thorsten Remmel, M +49 (0) 15201967179, T +49 (0) 221/9988982-0, email thorsten@rangmbh.com

Knauf
Operating more than 150 production sites worldwide, Knauf is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of building materials. Knauf has a workforce of 23,000 in 40 countries. In 2010, the company generated sales of more than EUR6bn. Its headquarters is in the UAE, along with a regional support office in Qatar and a manufacturing plant in Ras al Khaimah.

“The Middle East is an extremely important market for Knauf. The types of projects available in the and the scale is extremely interesting to work with.

That is why, in order to support regional projects, Knauf invested heavily in its manufacturing plant of gypsum boards, metal profiles and jointing compounds in Ras Al Khaimah,” says marketing manager Kerim Caglar.

“We are confident about the future growth in the region, especially in Qatar and Abu Dhabi, where we have been growing at more than 9% for the past few years.”

The company’s main products are: gypsum board based drywall construction systems, cement board based water proof interior systems, cement board based building façade systems, wood wool and gypsum based acoustical treatment systems.

“We have recently started to introduce EcoBatt glasswool insulation for acoustical and thermal treatments. It is an amazingly sustainable product. By the end of the year, EcoBatt technology will be more common in construction projects due to its manufacturing technology, which contains no phenol, formaldehyde, acrylics or artificial colours,” says Caglar.

The company’s attention to detail and high quality makes its products ideal for the demanding GCC construction market. “There are many projects in the region that do not compromise in terms of quality levels. Recently we introduced Safeboard gypsum boards, which is replacing lead sheet lamination based X-ray and radiation shielding in hospital construction.

Since its introduction to market, regional projects have been very proactive in installing Safeboard shielding technology,” says Caglar.

Reference projects include the Burj Al Khalifa, Armani Hotel, Burj Al Arab, Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi and the Clock Tower in Makkah.

“At any given time we are working on 15 large-scale projects with our project partners in the region,” says Caglar. “Our main advantage is that we can offer complete building systems.”

Contact Kerim Caglar, T +971 (4) 337 7170, caglar.kerim@knauf.ae

BASF - The Chemical Company
BASF has had a presence in the UAE for more than three decades. In that time it has achieved high-level recognition from commercial enterprise and public entities for its expertise and advanced product ranges backed by ongoing R&D, together with its high-touch customer service philosophy and ability to address global challenges – in the development and production of its solutions, as well as their application and use.

BASF’s operations in the Arabian Gulf region comprise BASF FZE, BASF Kanoo Gulf FZE, Elastogran Kanoo LLC, BASF Construction Chemicals UAE LLC and Wintershall, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the BASF Group.

BASF is active in industries such as construction, chemicals (oil and gas) and speciality sectors (plastics, seawater deslination) in the Middle East.

The Middle East region is a major growth market that BASF is focusing on. It is this regional focus that differentiates it from its competitors.

It develops solutions that fulfill local requirements using global best practices and, at all times, conducts its business in a way that empowers local residents and sets standards for responsible governance.

BASF – The Chemical Company is the largest chemical company in the world. What has helped catapult it to this pre-eminent position is a key business philosophy encapsulated in the slogan ‘we help to shape the future’.

Our future, Earth’s future, depends on the development and use of energy-efficient, sustainable solutions. At BASF, we live this philosophy.

BASF’s flagship reference projects in the region to date include the Burj Khalife, Dubai Metro, the Ras Laffan port in Qatar, different oil and gas applications and water desalination, to name a few.

The strategy of BASF in the region takes its lead from global strategy decisions with a market interest in growing its share in oil and gas, construction chemicals and the plastics and polyurethane industries.

The world is facing enormous challenges, such as population growth, ever-scarcer resources and increasing environmental stress and resource depletion.

The chemical industry can, and must, help to master these tasks. As the world’s leading chemical company worldwide, BASF is committed to playing a key role.

Contact Karen Gallacher, karen.gallacher@basf.com

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