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France presents sustainable energy solutions at MEE 2020

France presents sustainable energy solutions at MEE 2020

19 companies exhibited at the French Pavilion organised by Business France at the 45th edition of Middle East Energy (formerly known as Middle East Electricity). The French Pavilion represented a variety of sectors including equipment and applications for power generation, transmission and distribution, protection and security, products and systems, and lighting.

MECN visited the French Pavilion to explore what are some of the opportunities from French companies in the region’s power sector which is undergoing an unprecedented transformation, with the shift towards renewable energy and digital transformation.

Benoit de Turckheim, director general export at MasterGrid, a high voltage equipment manufacturer formerly know under the name of Merlin Gerin, said that they have 5500 equipment located in over 68 countries around the world. “For us the Middle East is an important area because the install base we have, for ex, in Saudi Arabia is bigger than the install base we have in France. In general we are doing 25 per cent of our business and activities out of France, whereas the install base represents 75 per cent of the potential.”

“So, we are now really focusing our expertise on the global market and building relationships with our customers to better maintain their equipment as well as conduct training sessions in local markets. Our aim is to build local competencies because we believe that service needs to be close to the customer and localised in the country.”

“In the UAE itself, we have DEWA, SEWA and ADEAW as customers and even recently we have been involved in the refurbishment of the Qasimiya sub-station, and now due to our expertise they can anticipate the maintenance of their equipment and optimise efficiency,” he added.

Alexandros Chimonides, sales engineer at Saft, a Total company, said: “Our company originated in Sweden 102 years ago, but we are now French owned. We manufacture primarily nickel cadmium batteries, but we are also involved in lithium ion. We are also working with all the major sectors- data centres, oil and gas, utilities etc. and have been involved in the Middle East for many projects, like the Dubai metro and the Doha metro.”

Turckheim and Chimonides stated that they were expecting less visitors to the MEE due to the ongoing COVID-19, however the response to the exhibition has been generally positive.

As an advantage of a very favourable context ($109 billion of investment forecasts within the next five years in the Middle East), the development of tourism, mass distribution, transport and logistics, the main drivers of growth outside the hydrocarbon market, are fuelling regional markets demand, according to a statement from Business France.

With global energy consumption set to double by 2050, according to the Energy & Utilities Market Outlook Report 2020 by Informa Markets, organiser of Middle East Energy, the 2020 show is championing companies from more than 130 countries that are rising to the dual challenges of meeting rising energy demand and paying greater attention to low-carbon systems.

Middle East Energy is held under the patronage of HH Sheikh Maktoum Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Deputy Ruler and is hosted by the UAE Ministry of Energy. It will run from March 3 -5, 2020 at the Dubai World Trade Centre.

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