Major names to enter market but basics still lacking says Dewan Architects director
The level of current opportunities in Basra’s construction market is so high the province will require “50 large architecture firms and 100 contractors” in the coming years.
Executive director of Dewan Architects and Engineers, Ammar Al Assam, said that he expected there to be 950 projects launched over the next year. He predicted that a number of major names would enter the market over the next two years.
“Iraq has been served by a very centralised government state and all the big projects were government owned; there are no contractors in Iraq who can develop to the quality we are used to and there aren’t even any private sector consultants,” Al Assam said.
Naming the problem as one of three key hurdles to the development of the province, Al Assam added: “It’s competitive but it needs everybody to go in and there is opportunity for everybody.”
This month Dewan is due to officially unveil plans for its own mega-project 35km outside the existing main city. It is also working on Basra Cultural Palace, Basra Governorate Project and a five star hotel design and build contract.
“Iraq needs professional people to move in. If you think about it in a very procedural and systematic way you won’t get anywhere; you just have to go there and set up an office, take on a small project and develop your network from there.
“”The government doesn’t need partnerships because they have money. There is a lot of land up for development in Iraq. If you have a business plan, a project masterplan and you can show that you are serious they, will give you the land,” he explained.