UAE glass consumption rises sharply

The fourth Gulf Glass 2011 exhibition opened its doors in the UAE capital on 7 March to explore the potential of business with about 1,300 projects worth USD 418 billion under construction in the UAE …

The fourth Gulf Glass 2011 exhibition opened its doors in the UAE capital on 7 March to explore the potential of business with about 1,300 projects worth USD 418 billion under construction in the UAE alone. Mubarak Salem Musallam Al Ameri, Second Vice-President of the Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce and Industry, inaugurated the show at Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNCE). “The exhibition is being participated by exhibitors from over 20 countries and comes at a significant time as the UAE“s glass industry braces for unprecedented growth with the country“s construction industry preparing to witness a compounded annual growth rate of around 20 per cent from 2010 to 2013.” A further 300 projects worth USD 143 billion are in the design, planning or bidding stages, with Qatar having a burgeoning construction sector bolstered by its hosting of the 2022 World Cup, said GGF MENA (the regional arm for the UK-based Glass and Glazing Federation) director Steve Rice. The Middle East is undergoing an ever-increasing demand for float glass and processed, speciality glass products, employing new and innovative technologies and pushing architectural boundaries, not only in design trends, but also in environmental protection. “Abu Dhabi in particular has a very powerful and stable economy, and Dubai remains an excellent market with many prestigious projects being undertaken,” Rice said. “As such, this Gulf Glass 2011 exhibition represents a great opportunity for companies to learn about the region as visitors, or to present their products and services to some very serious buyers and specifiers,” he added. Glass consumption is also rising rapidly in the container glass sector of the market as confidence returns to the region. Aggressive expansion and investment in glass packaging facilities are clear indications that the container industry in the Middle East and Maghreb regions is one of the most globally strategic, with pharmaceuticals and food packaging markets in particular set to enjoy double digit growth. “With all this exciting investment, the glass industry is ripe for investment and expansion,” says Derek Burston, event manager for Gulf Glass 2011.