Construction Week In Focus | S02E31: Details of Saudi Arabia's Spark

Aramco's King Salman Energy Park was launched by Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince on 10 December

State-owned oil giant Saudi Aramco will create thousands of jobs by kicking off the construction of its latest multibillion-dollar megaproject, King Salman Energy Park (Spark)Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince, HRH Mohammed Bin Salman, unveiled Spark on 10 December, 2018.

Spark is one of the country's anchor projects underpinning Saudi Arabia's Vision 2030 strategy for social and economic change. 

The 50km2 industrial hub for energy-related manufacturing and services is likely to cost billions of dollars to build. Land activation work for the scheme began in September 2017, and the project’s engineering design is now more than halfway complete. Spark's first phase will be completed in 2021, with the entire scheme aiming to be ready by 2035.

On Twitter, Spark said that its first 10 investors and tenants include Baker Hughes, a GE Company, Borets, Valvo Spain, Schlumberger, Al Rushed Group, Halliburton, Emerson, University of North Dakota Aerospace, Oilfields Supply Centre Ltd, and NESR.

The industrial hub will target exploration, production, refining, petrochemicals, and conventional power, as well as water production and treatment. It aims to spur innovation in the energy sector, which Saudi Arabia is keen to accelerate as it explores renewable and nuclear options to diversify its power mix. 

READ: Saudi Crown Prince unveils Aramco energy megaproject Spark

The sprawling industrial and residential site will feature top-line public infrastructure, logistics facilities and a dry port, a commercial and residential area, and training centres. The megaproject aims to turn Saudi Arabia into a global energy hub that attracts foreign investment and accelerates economic diversification. Spark will be operated and anchored by Saudi Aramco, which will build its drilling and workover headquarters within the city, as well as operate its procurement and supply chain management centre from the space. Aramco will develop, operate, manage, and maintain the park’s infrastructure in partnership with Saudi Authority for Industrial Cities and Technological Zones (Modon).

In this episode of Construction Week In Focus, Oscar Rousseau and Jack Ball, Construction Week's deputy editor and senior reporter, discuss the long-term impact that Spark will have on Saudi Arabia's construction sector, and its economy. 

Construction Week In Focus is a weekly bulletin of the Middle East's top news from the real estate development, contracting, MEP, facilities management, and equipment sectors.

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Construction Week In Focus episodes are published each Tuesday at 9am.

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