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Singapore Building Firms Form Consortium To Tap Middle East Markets

Fourteen Singapore construction firms with a combined annual turnover of more than one billion Singapore dollars ($610 million) will form a consortium to jointly explore the lucrative Middle East markets, a government body said. The Singapore Building and Infrastructure Consortium (SBIC) has 14 members including SembCorp Engineers and Constructors, Southeast Asia's largest engineering and construction group, and Meinhardt Singapore, the local arm of the Australian engineering consultancy group.

Last year, Saudi Arabia was Singapore's biggest trading partner in the Middle East and 16th largest overall with total trade valued at 9.9 billion dollars, IES said. The United Arab Emirates was ranked 18th overall with total trade worth 6.55 billion dollars, it said.

Export-reliant Singapore is now looking to expand ties with Middle East economies and the government has led several trade missions over the past two years. It is also in negotiations with several Middle East economies, including Kuwait, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates for free trade agreements.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2005

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