Gulf projects index swells by 3.5 per cent

22 March 2023

 

The Gulf Projects Index grew by 3.5 per cent in the five weeks from 10 February to 17 March, rising by $109bn to a value of $3.22tn. The gains reversed the previous month’s $70bn loss.

Saudi Arabia’s projects market led the rise, growing by 7.5 per cent, or $103.4bn, over the period. The broader GCC projects markets grew by 4.8 per cent, or $121.7bn, to a value of $2.65tn, while the other Gulf markets, Iran and Iraq, declined and weighed on the overall growth.

The Saudi market’s steep rise was driven by the launch of the $50bn New Murabba project to redevelop Riyadh’s downtown. Plans were also announced by the US Army Corps of Engineers to develop a $10-15bn new military headquarters and joint command in the country on behalf of the Military of Defence.

Bahrain’s projects market saw the strongest percentage growth, at 8.9 per cent – an increase of $6bn. This was driven by the launch of a $4bn carbon capture and storage project by Nogaholding.

The UAE projects market also grew by 4.3 per cent, or $22.7bn, over the period. Key developments included the launch of the $3.2bn Dubai International Financial Centre expansion 2.0 and the restart of the $1.8bn Adnoc Masaken project to develop staff accommodation.

Waning markets

The sharpest decline within the GCC came from Kuwait’s projects market, which fell by 3.6 per cent, or $6.4bn. Qatar’s projects market dropped by 2.4 per cent, or $4.4bn. Oman’s projects market held steady at 0.2 per cent growth.

Across the Gulf, the declines were led by Iran, which shed 3.9 per cent, or $11.6bn, largely due to the stalling of the Iran gas trunkline project. Iraq’s projects market shed a marginal 0.4 per cent, or $1.1bn, in value.  

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John Bambridge
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