MONTREAL, Feb. 5, 2014 /CNW Telbec/ - On the occasion of the visit to the Middle East by Robert G. Card, President and CEO of SNC-Lavalin Group Inc., the Company announced the opening of its regional head office for the Middle East and Africa located in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. Mr. Card also attended the launch celebration in Saudi Arabia for the new city of Wa'ad Al Shamal.
The opening of the office, an important milestone in SNC-Lavalin's development, coincides with a contract the company recently signed with Ma'aden in Saudi Arabia. Estimated at USD $500 million, the contract includes the engineering, procurement, construction, commissioning and start-up of a three-line 15,150-metric-tonne-per-day sulphuric acid plant.
"With estimated GDP growth of over 5.6% per year until 2018, and with major projects in the infrastructure, oil and gas, mining and power sectors, the Middle East region offers significant development opportunities for SNC-Lavalin," said Mr. Card during his visit to the Abu Dhabi office. "This is a target region for the Group's activities, and the opening of this regional head office is an indication of our intention to expand our activities and make important contributions in this region."
The Middle East and Africa region contributes significantly to the business volume of the Company's Mining & Metallurgy and Oil & Gas business units (18 percent and 25 percent respectively as of December 2012). As of December 2013, the Company had more than 3,000 employees across the Middle East and Africa.
"The opening of this regional head office will allow us to strengthen our client relationships, expand our commercial opportunities and have the best business platform to deliver projects according to clients' expectations," said Christian Jacqui, Executive Vice-President, Global Operations, SNC-Lavalin Group Inc.
Under the leadership of Ziad Awad, Senior Vice-President and Regional Head for the Middle East and Africa, this office will work closely with existing offices across the region, specifically in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, South Africa, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and Libya.
SNC-Lavalin is already present in the Middle East through major projects. Having installed cooling equipment with more than 530,000 refrigeration-tonnes of capacity, primarily in the Middle East, SNC-Lavalin has become the main supplier of district cooling solutions in the world. The Group has also recently been awarded engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contracts for the Dubai subway cooling system project.
SNC-Lavalin is also a leader in the region's metallurgy sector, particularly as a result of the DUBAL aluminum smelter expansion project in Dubai and, more recently, the EMAL II aluminum smelter project in Abu Dhabi. The EMAL aluminum smelter complex is one of the largest in the world, with a production capacity of 1.35 million tonnes per year.
In Saudi Arabia, the general engineering services (GES+) contract between SNC-Lavalin and Saudi Aramco, the world's biggest oil producer, is a recognition of the Company's ability to create value in the Kingdom by supporting its world-class oil and gas projects and pairing its expertise with that of its Saudi partners.
In Qatar, the local joint venture set up by SNC-Lavalin with its partner in Doha will continue to strengthen the activities of the Group and develop business opportunities in the oil and gas, facilities management, real estate, industrial and infrastructure sectors.
Finally, SNC-Lavalin's High-Value Centres with world-class engineers in Egypt, India, UK and Canada, will continue to support its operations in the region.
SNC-Lavalin is one of the leading engineering and construction groups in the world, and is a major player in the ownership of infrastructure and in the provision of operations and maintenance services. Founded in 1911, SNC-Lavalin has offices across Canada and in over 40 other countries around the world, and is currently active in some 100 countries. www.snclavalin.com