The Gulf Projects Index fell by 1.6 per cent in the week ending 28 October, with the UAE recording the biggest drop, followed by Qatar. This follows a month of continuous gains on the projects index.

The downward revision of budgets for several schemes in Dubai and Abu Dhabi drove the 5 per cent fall in the UAE projects market. The successful completion of several small transport, power and construction schemes, together worth $871m, also contributed to the decline.

The fall comes despite the announcement of several property projects. Overall, the UAE is having a strong year, up nearly 4.8 per cent year-on-year.

Project updates
  Project name Project status
Bahrain West End Tower Revived
Iraq Taq Taq dam and hydropower project On hold
Saudi Arabia Mixed-use development in Medina New project
UAE Dubailand Budget change
UAE Dubai Maritime City: Bellatora Residences Cancelled
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Qatar also recorded a significant drop in its market, mainly due to budget revisions and project completions. But its projects market is still very active due to the rail and water infrastructure schemes being carried out in preparation for the 2022 football World Cup.

The cancellation of Saudi Arabia’s Sadaf polyurethane plant, worth about $3bn, caused the value of the Saudi market to fall by 0.3 per cent. Another reason for the decline was the completion of the Ras al-Khair Aluminium Project.

Despite this, the Saudi projects market has had an excellent year, gaining 19.6 per cent. Many infrastructure and housing schemes are planned and under way, such as Saudi Aramco’s construction of thousands of villas in the Eastern Province, worth more than $5bn.

Upcoming tender deadlines
  Client Contract Submission date
UAE Nakheel Palm Hotel tower 02-Nov
Kuwait Kuwait National Petroleum Company New Refinery Project 09-Nov
UAE Tameer Holding Tameer Towers 13-Nov
Qatar Qatar General Electricity & Water Corporation (Kahramaa) Ras Laffan independent water project 06-Jan
UAE Dubai Electricity & Water Authority Hassyan power plant 26-Jan
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Oman’s market fell 0.1 per cent as oil infrastructure projects were completed, while Bahrain saw similar movements.

Outside the GCC, Iraq continued to put schemes on hold due to ongoing conflict. The Iraq-Jordan oil pipeline was put on hold this week, as were a number of other power and public works projects.

Iran’s project market remained stagnant.

Contract awards

Biggest contract

$802m Awarded to the local Sayed Hamid Behbehani & Sons for design and construction of the expansion of Kuwait’s Adan hospital

$2.5bn Value of major contract awards

5 Number of contracts awarded