Decline in Oil Prices Translates into Reduced Construction Orders from the Middle East

The Middle East is reportedly witnessing a decline in the performance of the domestic construction sector and plant industry. This is being linked to lower numbers of plant orders from key oil-producing countries – a factor that is further ascribed to a sharp dip in international prices of oil. With sliding oil prices, it is likely that OPEC countries could be staring at a financial crisis. This could potentially lead to these countries cancelling or deferring plans for commissioning gas or oil plants.

According the latest figures reported in the media on December 1, 2014, the reduced plant orders from oil-producing nations in the Middle East is already showing an impact on the Korean construction sector. Orders from Saudi Arabia to Korea, for instance, fell down to US$2.95 billion in 2014, as compared to US$8.76 billion during the same time in 2013. Saudi Arabia slipped from its premier position as the largest business provider to the Korean construction sector between 2011 and 2013. This year, Saudi Arabia ranked behind the UAE and Vietnam, which is an emerging economy.

A similar declining trend was observed in orders from Qatar, with orders going down as much as 62%, a leading business portal from Korea reported. According to the portal, the domestic construction industry is anxious to a high number of order cancellations affecting the construction sector, on lines similar to the post-2008 recession period. The recession had caused losses of billions of dollars, either because projects were delayed indefinitely or cancelled altogether.


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