Youssef Ouchagour, construction industry analyst at Timetric’s Construction Intelligence Center, looks at some of China’s leading contractors, and projects that they are undertaking in Africa.
Willemen Groep comprising Aswebo, Aannemingen Van Wellen, Franki Construct and Cosimco has won a contract from the Dutch company APM Terminals to build a new container terminal in Morocco.
Moroccan phosphate producer OCP Group has partnered with the Ethiopian government to construct a $2.4bn fertilizer plant in Ethiopia.
Subsea 7, a provider of subsea EPC services, has won a contract from Pharaonic Petroleum Company for work at Egypt’s Atoll gas field.
Morocco’s mosques are set to receive a ‘green makeover’ in a government-led initiative to improve efficiency and promote renewable energy.
The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) and Lekela Power have signed an agreement for the development, construction and operation of a 158MW wind farm in Taiba N’Diaye, Senegal.
China Railway Construction has secured a $1.85bn contract to build a light railway line in the state of Kano, Nigeria.The contract — awarded by the Ministry of Works, Housing & Transport — will involve the construction of about 74.3km of rail lines, which will have the capacity to carry trains travelling at a top speed of 100km per hour.The company did not disclose details regarding when the project is expected to commence, but said that phase one and two of the project are expected to last for two years each."This award is subject to the fulfilment of all conditions spelled out in the letter of intent from the financing bank and the final approval by the presidency of Nigeria," said China Railway Construction in a statement issued to the Hong Kong stock exchange.
“The size of this project is remarkable — the viaduct is one of the largest in the world,” says Olivier Tricoire, Nouvelle Route du Littoral deputy director of operations. The ‘Nouvelle Route du Littoral’ is currently under construction in Réunion Island’s — a French department — Indian Ocean and is set to be one of the biggest projects ever undertaken by the French government. The 12.5km highway, parallel to the coast, will connect Saint Dennis with La Grande Chaloupe and replace the existing coastal road between Saint Dennis and La Possession. The existing road is exposed to sea spray when there’s heavy swell — frequently occurring due to the absence of a continental plateau — and to the falling of rocks. The 80,000 people who frequently use the road are often stuck in traffic jams, as the authorities have to close one or two lanes for a period of two months to a year. The new coastal highway will eliminate these issues, as it will be 20-30m above sea level — expected to be above the highest waves of the biggest storms. The €1.7bn development has been awarded to two joint ventures. The construction of the 5.4km viaduct section — €715M of works — is under the responsibility of the viaduct joint venture, which comprises Vinci Construction Grands Projects, Dodin Campenon Bernard, Bouygues Travaux Publics and Demathieu Bard. The second contract, worth €530M, has been awarded to a joint venture of Vinci Construction Terrassement and local companies SBTPC and Grands Travaux de l’Océan Indien, which will be responsible for the 6.7km of embankments and La Possession interchange. The dual carriageway will have two lanes in each direction, and has been designed to accommodate a rail line later on. Tricoire says: “The Regional council chose to not increase the personal vehicle capacity and instead to promote collective transport. The project includes lanes only for bus — and later tramway — and also pedestrian and bicycle ways.”
Tanzania’s government will invest at least $30bn on the construction of a gas processing plant in the Lindi area.The country’s minister for energy and minerals Prof Sospeter Muhongo said that the government is commencing on the project and that an economic revolution should be expected in years to come. “I would like to ensure Lindi residents and Tanzanians in general that our economy is going to grow at a high speed, we are going to invest at least $30bn in the construction of gas processing plant,” he said, speaking at the launch of the Nanenane exhibitions, taking place at the Ngongo grounds in the Lindi municipality.As part of the project, the government will have to build about 200km of gas pipes to transport the gas from the sea to the plant. Since the discovery of natural gas in the country the economy has experienced a huge growth with 70% of power generation now coming from gas.The development is set to take several years to complete, as a “large amount of money, highly skilled and experienced labour and good supervision” are needed, added Muhongo.The minister also commented on the proposed $1.9bn fertiliser factory to be also located in Lindi area. The plant is expected to produce 3,850t of fertiliser daily and provide employment to 5,000 Tanzanians.
US-based engineering services provider Fluor has won a $501M contract from Compagnie des Bauxites de Guinée (CBG) for a bauxite production expansion project in Kamsar, Guinea.Under the contract, Fluor will provide engineering, procurement and construction management services for the project.The scope of the project includes the expansion of bauxite production from 14.5M to 18.5M t annually. It will also involve the expansion of the mine infrastructure, rail system, port facility and processing plant. The project represents the company’s first of a planned three-phase expansion. Fluor has been involved in the project since its early stages executing the feasibility study and early engineering.Rick Koumouris, president of Fluor’s mining & metals business, said: “Fluor has worked with CBG to develop a capital-efficient solution that combines delivery predictability and flexibility for maintenance and future expansions.“Given the project’s location and unique logistical challenges, Fluor will bring unmatched technical and execution expertise, as well as the requisite Guinea experience, to deliver this project safely, on schedule and on budget.”The expansion project is expected to be completed in 2018.
Construction firm China Wu Yi has secured a KES16.4bn ($161.7M) contract from the Kenya National Highway Authority (KeNHA) for the expansion of the James Gichuru-Mai Mahi road in Kenya.The company will be responsible for the extension of a 25km stretch of Waiyaki Way, starting from the James Gichuru Road junction to the Mai Mahiu turn-off on the Nairobi-Nakuru highway.The scope of the work will include the construction of 13 bridges at interchange locations, 21 pedestrian overpasses, five overpasses, and the installation of street lighting.The project forms part of a World Bank-financed road expansion project, which involves the conversion of 45.2km of road between Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) and Rironi into a superhighway.The expansion project is anticipated to take 36 months to complete.
Italian company Saipem has secured EUR1.5bn in contracts and variation orders for engineering and construction (E&C) at offshore projects, including the field development project for the Zohr gas field. Saipem bagged an engineering, procurement, construction and installation (EPCI) contract from Petrobel for the accelerated start-up of the Zohr gas field project off the Egyptian coast in the Mediterranean Sea. The scope of the work includes the installation of a 26-inch gas export trunkline as well as 14-inch and 8-inch service trunklines. The company will also carry out EPCI work for the field development in deep water — up to 1700m — of 6 wells as well as installation of the umbilical system. Petrobel, a joint venture between Eni and Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation, is responsible for the development of the Zohr project on behalf of PetroShorouk — a joint venture between Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company and Eni.Saipem’s CEO Stefano Cao said: “We are very pleased to have been selected for the important objective of delivering first gas from Zohr before the end of 2017. “We will mobilize a fleet of vessels with last-generation capabilities, and leverage on our proven expertise and consolidated presence in the area, in order to ensure our clients achieve their targets.”Work on the project is expected to commence in July 2016 and be completed by the end of 2017.
The African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved $245M in loans and grants to the governments of Uganda and Rwanda to finance a transport project.In Uganda, the bank’s $151M loan will be used to support the construction of a 23.7km expressway, which will facilitate the journey between Kampala (Busega) and Mpigi on the Northern Corridor — a major trade route in the region.In Rwanda, the $94M bank loan will finance the rehabilitation of a 208km road in eastern Rwanda. The project also involves the construction of two cross-border markets at Kagitumba and Rusumo.Amadou Oumarou, AfDB’s Transport & ICT Department director, said: “The project will contribute to poverty reduction, improve the quality of life of people in the area by providing socio-economic facilities. “It will also contributes to agriculture development and food security; and facilitates industrialization through reduced transportation and logistics costs.”The overall cost of the project is estimated at $376.5M, and will be co-financed by AfDB ($244.6M), Japan International Cooperation Agency ($56.3M), European Union ($22.4M) and the governments of Uganda and Rwanda ($53.2M).
A joint venture of Orascom Construction and Arab Contractors has secured a €590M contract to deliver Phase 4B of Cairo Metro Line III in Egypt.Under the contract, awarded by the National Authority for Tunnels, the JV will be responsible for the full scope of the new phase that will stretch 6.1km across a viaduct and five elevated stations.Orascom Construction’s share of the contract is valued at about €295M. Phase 4B follows the group’s previously-announced contract awards for the third line of Cairo Metro.The group is currently executing contracts amounting to about €375M for Phase III and €90M for Phase 4A.
Sener and Acciona have begun the turnkey construction of the €500M Kathu Solar Park Complex in South Africa.Located in the town of Kathu, in South Africa’s Northern Cape Province, the 100MW plant will be able to generate enough electricity to supply 80,000 homes.Both firms will carry out the engineering, construction management and commissioning of the plant until its turnkey delivery. The project, part of the 2010 Integrated Resource Program (IRP) National Electricity Plan, will provide an increase in the country's generation capacity until it reaches 86.8GW in 2030.The project, which uses Sener’s ‘SENERtrough’ technology and a molten salt storage system, is scheduled to commence operations in 2018. It represents the second solar thermal project in South Africa on which both companies are working together, the first being the recently-opened 50MW Bokpoort plant.
The Government of Egypt and the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development have signed a loan agreement of $98.6M for the construction of five desalination plants in Southern Sinai, Egypt.The project will aim to meet the demand for potable water in some towns in the South of Sinai, as well as in existing residential settlements, and other settlements due to be established, in the Sinai Peninsula.The five plants will process water from the Red Sea and other related works.One of the plants, to be located in the town of El Tor, will have a daily capacity of 20,000cb m, while the other four plants, to be located in Ras Sidr, Abu Zenima, Dahab and Nuwaiba, will each have a capacity of 10,000cb m per day.The development includes the supply of electricity to the plants and the installation of pipelines with a total length of about 42km and diameters ranging between 500–800mm for transmission of the desalinated water to storage tanks, and pipelines with a total length of about 183km and diameters ranging between 200–500mm for transmission of water from the tanks to the nearby settlements.Additionally, it will also involve the construction of eight pumping stations and the necessary networks for distribution of water inside the settlements. The project is expected to be complete by the end of 2019.
Italian construction firm Salini Impregilo has secured a contract worth €2.5bn for the Koyash Dam hydropower project in Ethiopia.The contract, awarded by the Ethiopian Electric Power (EEP), will include the construction of a 170m-high rolled compacted dam creating a reservoir volume of 6,000M cubic metres.With an installed capacity of 2,200MW, the facility will generate 6,460GWh of power annually.Salini Impregilo said the new project along with GIBE III, which went into operation recently, and GERD, the Grand Renaissance Dam on the Blue Nile will enable Ethiopia to become Africa’s leader in terms of energy production.
Green Valley Real Estate has announced plans for a AED500M ($136M) residential project in Marrakech, Morocco.The 410,000sq m development, called ‘City of Green Valley-Marrakech’, is located 11km from Marrakech city centre and will feature 350 residential villas with 100,000sq m of green spaces.It will also include restaurants, cafes, a supermarket, a spa area, health clubs, swimming pools, bars and sports courts.Green Valley Real Estate owner and general manager, Ali Saeed Al Salami said: "We are privileged to announce the project in Marrakech. "Aside of being a state-of-the-art and cutting edge project, it also offers excellent growth potential for investors looking for substantial return on their investment in Marrakech."This is a luxury project and offers amazing investment opportunities in the city, which is otherwise considered a perfect tourist destination."The project follows the completion of developments in Turkey, UAE and other parts of the Middle East.<iframe src="https://timetric.com/c/TT4M9NW/chart/" style="width:500px;height:350px;border:0;" frameborder="0" scrolling="no"></iframe>
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has agreed to provide $250M for infrastructure projects in Egypt.EBRD has signed two memorandums of understanding (MoU) with Egypt’s Ministry of International Cooperation (MOIC) aimed at improving services in the transport and water sectors.Under the first MoU, EBRD will support the refurbishment of the Heliopolis tram link between the Ramsis and Almaza areas in Cairo. The entire cost of the project is estimated to be $500M.The second MoU is the bank’s first formal engagement in developing a water irrigation system — part of a programme developed by the Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation (MWRI) of Egypt for the modernisation of the irrigation system to increase efficiency and quality of services.
US-based Arrow Capital and the University of Ilorin have finalised arrangements for the construction of a $2.3bn solar power plant at the university in Nigeria.