Gulf countries push local involvement in public sector work and the development of state-owned companies into major regional and international entities

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National champions emerge to cater to projects boom

Region forms national champion companies to guarantee the delivery of its most strategic projects

On 5 July, Saudi Aramco announced the expansion of its Namaat industrial investment programme with the signing of 55 agreements and memorandums of understanding. 

Crucially, they included six agreements with joint ventures comprising local and international partners for the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) of new projects in the kingdom.  

The joint ventures involved some of the world’s largest EPC players, namely Samsung Engineering, Saipem, Sinopec Shanghai Engineering Company, Hyundai, Kent and Larsen & Toubro, teaming up with major players in the kingdom to invest and build up their resources in the country.

The Aramco signing ceremony in Dhahran was the strongest sign yet of the commitment to establishing national champions tasked with delivering key infrastructure projects.  

The drive to create national champions is both a decision aimed at retaining the positive multiplier effect of infrastructure spending within the domestic economy and a move born out of necessity as the entities charged with delivering major projects grow more concerned about the supply chain’s ability to deliver ambitious programmes of work. Read more

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Related reads in the September issue of MEED Business Review:

> National champions face same root challenge

> Emirates Steel Arkan champions UAE’s projects sector

South Korean contractor seeks regional growth

> Read the September edition of MEED Business Review

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