The total value of 1,153 hospitality projects exceeded Dh544.62 billion (US$148.4 billion) in the first quarter of 2017, according to BNC Network, – the largest and most comprehensive project research and intelligence provider in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.
The GCC’s hospitality industry constitutes 7 per cent of all active projects in the GCC’s urban construction sector. In dollar terms, hospitality projects account for 13 per cent of the total estimated value of the region’s urban construction sector, the latest BNC Intelligence, issued by BNC Network, shows.
The latest BNC Intelligence report reflects the growing focus on tourism sector development by the governments of the oil-rich Gulf countries, gradually trying to diversify revenue base and reduce dependence on hydrocarbon.
“With the upcoming mega events such as Expo 2020 in Dubai and the World Cup in Qatar, the GCC governments are obviously preparing themselves for major global events that require additional hotel and tourism facilities that also will help them diversify revenue sources,” Avin Gidwani, Chief Executive Officer of BNC Network, says.
The GCC countries entered into a Customs Union in 2003 and created a Common Market in 2008 – as part of a plan to integrate the region’s economy further.
“With the ongoing economic integration process and as the GCC countries prepares to develop a common market and once the physical infrastructure – such as the GCC rail networks connect the major cities – regional tourism sector will get a major boost in the years to come. People from one city will travel to the other for overnight stay and return without having to cross the border formalities – such as the European Union. The region is preparing for such heavy tourism traffic,” Gidwani says.
“There will be a time when people will board a train from Ras Al Khaimah to perform Umrah in Makkah and return to Ras Al Khaimah a day later.”
Sixty-two projects with combined estimated value of over Dh9.1 billion (US$2.5 billion) were launched in the first quarter of 2017, BNC Intelligence shows.
“BNC Intelligence shows, around 12 hospitality projects with a combined estimated value of around US$945 million (Dh3.46 billion) moved to construction from other stages during the month. The largest hospitality project in dollar terms to be awarded was Extension and Renovation of Beach Rotana Hotel located in Abu Dhabi’s Tourist Club Area worth US$215 million,” Gidwani says. “Six hospitality projects with a combined estimated value of around US$390.5 million (Dh1.43 billion) were completed during the month.”