Editor's Letter: A look at Bahrain’s buoyant construction market
CW witnessed how Bahrain is one to watch out for, with an array of exciting developments shaping its economy
Bahrain is an area of the Middle East, which admittedly, we have not covered enough on Construction Week in the past compared to the likes of Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
However, my aim for this year is to travel around the Middle East more often, and visit countries within the region that may be arguably overlooked.
First up on my commitment is Bahrain. During a trip to Manama last month, I witnessed the broad range of fascinating on-going projects, which I believe are certainly going to turn heads from other GCC countries.
2020 is going to be a milestone year for the Middle East, but we must not forget the efforts going on from the likes of Bahrain and how it is delivering change for the country.
As you will read in my cover story further on into the magazine, I spoke with major names from Bahrain’s construction sector about how activities are driving improvements for the market as part of its Economic Vision 2030 agenda.
Launched in October 2008 by Bahrain’s King, His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, the Economic Vision 2030 aims to provide a clear direction for the continued development of the kingdom’s economy and to build a better life for Bahraini people.
During the four day trip to Manama, I gathered comments from Bahrain’s Minister of Oil HE Sheikh Mohammed Bin Khalifa Al Khalifa, among others
HE Sheikh Al Khalifa sat down with me in an exclusive interview in Bahrain’s government offices to discuss the multi-billion dollar expansion of the Bapco oil refinery and how the sector could be impacted as the country looks to reduce its dependency on oil.
Other high-profile names included Bahrain Bay’s CEO Gagan Suri, who told me that he believed the future of Manama would be in Bahrain Bay. Diyar Al Muharraq CEO Ahmed Alammadi gave me an insight into its partnership with Abu-Dhabi based real estate developer Eagle Hills and how it is building one of Bahrain’s largest shopping malls, as well as reputable hotels chain and residences within its 12.2km2 development.
More details on these interviews can be read later on in the magazine, but the conversations that I had with these individuals were some of the best in my career.
With a population of just 1.7 million people, the sheer amount of infrastructure cropping up in Bahrain was remarkable to see, and opened up my eyes on what we can expect for the country’s construction sector going forward.
I expect big things from the Kingdom of Bahrain in the the years to come and I look forward to see how these projects unfold.