The value of announced and planned construction projects in the UAE is expected to hit $315 billion in 2014, according to a new report by consultancy firm EC Harris.
The report found that as of May 2014, $212 billion worth of projects were under construction.
Spurred by a number of megaprojects in the pipeline and the ramping up of social infrastructure spend, the UAE’s construction market is expected to return to near full capacity, the report said.
“The UAE has experienced a shifting momentum of activity over the past decade with 2009 onwards being difficult years for the market,” said Christopher Seymour, partner and head of property and social infrastructure at EC Harris.
“The dynamic has changed from a period of negative to low inflation over the last few years to a period of moderate increase.
“The market is finally showing real signs of recovery and prospective growth suggesting that the construction market will remain strong this year,” he added.
According to EC Harris’ Construction Cost Index, construction prices in UAE are set to rise by four to five per cent over the duration of the year and approximately six per cent in 2015.
“We are seeing tenders in the market covering the full range of projects including large scale programmes and also smaller schemes right down to the small fit out work. To this extent, the market is showing a healthy profile with opportunities for SME and large international contractors and joint ventures,” said Seymour.
The construction market in the UAE and the wider GCC has been booming this year – a recent report by Ventures ME predicted that projects worth $128.46 billion will be completed across the GCC by the end of this year, up 92 per cent year-on-year in terms of value.
The construction industry has been goaded by a growth in infrastructure projects – with contracts across the region forecast to exceed $86 billion in 2014, up 77.8 per cent over 2013.
The UAE alone is expected to award infrastructure projects worth $15.18 billion in 2014, almost five times more than the value of contracts awarded in 2013, a recent study by construction intelligence firm Ventures Onsite showed.