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Exhibitors at the Commercial Vehicles Middle East fair reported a significant increase in sales across the GCC, indicating recovery in the construction sector

Last year, the first Commercial Vehicles Middle East (CVME) exhibition welcomed more than 3000 decision makers, purchasers and managers from 51 countries. This year’s show, held last month at Dubai World Trade Centre, saw exhibitors introduce a range of new hydraulic platforms, trucks, tyres and filtration systems.

According to the event organisers, Streamline Marketing Group (SMG), sales of commercial vehicles in the GCC increased by almost 50,000 units between 2009 and 2010 and exhibitors at the 2011 exhibition agree this indicates a steady recovery across the construction industry.

While there is still a long climb to achieve the sales seen before 2008, there is optimism across the entire construction spectrum.

“I think it would be over ambitious to say the industry has completely recovered but based on the CV industry sales statistics and forecasts, it would appear that it’s well on its way and within four years should reach the same levels as pre-recession,” says SMG group director Louisa Theobold, reporting an upward trend in freight movement and consumer activity.

The exhibition included speeches from Alexander Borg, regional director of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport, and Robin Voogd, general manager of commercial vehicle operators, Leaseplan.

I think it would be over ambitious to say the industry has completely recovered but based on sales statistics and forecasts it would appear that it is well on its way”

Speaking about industry innovations and the challenges of operating in a post-crash industry, Voogd says: “We see a shift from doing everything in a best practise manner in-house to outsourcing to professional suppliers.

“This restructures the supply chain: More specialised and professional suppliers emerge, resulting in an overall increase in efficiency and service offering for vehicle users,” Voogd adds.

Commenting on the new trading landscape, R.T. Wasan, head of international business for vehicle manufacturers Tata, says: “Since the crisis we have found the emerging markets have proved stronger than the developed markets.

“I feel there should be a lot of strong demand coming up in the Middle East in the near future. A lot of investment will be going into infrastructure projects and governments want to start creating economic opportunities for the people — and this will in turn create opportunities for us.”

“We’re looking forward to building on market optimisn for next year,” Theobold adds. “The UAE logistics market is expected to witness steady growth this year and a predicted 8-9 % growth every year during the period 2010-2020, reaching revenues of US$16 billion by 2020. Given the GCC’s need to import products from other markets and its strategic position as a logistics hub, the regional commercial vehicles market should continue to develop at an increased pace,” she concludes.

We’re looking forward to building on market optimisn for next year”

New products for a growing market

TATA

Established in 1945, today there are four million Tata vehicles on the road in India, including coaches, pick-up trucks and a new line in construction vehicles manufactured by daewoo.

A new line in 6×4 Prima trucks and tractors is scheduled for launch in the Middle East in december 2011.

Manufactured in India and Korea and distributed by United Motors, a 10,000 gallon capacity tank allows efficient aggregate transportation.

“These are world-class vehicles, specifically designed for the Middle East considering environmental factors and desert conditions such as sand,” says head of international business R.T. wasan.

“The trucks are ergonomically designed. for example, we have installed drum breaks to meet industry needs specific to the Middle East,” he adds.

Other trucks to be launched include the Xenon pick-ups; available in 10, three and one tonne models.

MARANGONI

Preparing to open a new factory in Abu dhabi, which is due for completion this month, Marangoni re-treading systems use special technology to check the quality of all the tyres they process.

Using a technique called shearography, technicians are able to see inside the tyre to check for quality and electronically track the technique to keep a record of quality control. “The factory will be the most modern in the UAE. In some factories, the tyres are still checked by tapping a hammer along the rubber to detect faults. The shearography technology allows our technicians to see inside the tyre.”

The treads used also offer increased durability, to withstand the debris found on-site.

“We will always be expensive compared to suppliers from China and India, but you cannot compete on price and quality. what we offer is products of the highest quality.”

SMART FILTRATION SOLUTIONS

Trading under the name donaldson, Smart filtration Solutions provides bulk fuel and lubricant filtration systems to clients such as dubai’s Road Transport Authority (RTA), Dubal and Emal.

The products are used wherever diesel, ethanol-free fuels and hydraulic oils are also in use; working to “remove dirt”, according to managing partner Mohammad Atif Manzoor. “Put simply, these filters remove dirt and optimise performance. we work with companies which use large vehicles, such as those in the construction industry and have also been targeting the oil industry.”

On display at CVME was the new PV series in pumps, which uses a highly sensitive integrated valve, and demonstrations were given of donaldson’s fuel filtration process.

RENAULT

The new Renault Kerax range offers five Euro3 engine variants, new drive axels and double reduction tandems for over and off road use.

With 380 horse power, the vehicles are available in five configurations; 4×2, 4×4, 6×4, 6×6 and 8×4. Each is engineered for use in difficult terrain; suited to large scale and infrastructure projects in any climate.

Renault trucks operate in more than 100 countries, marketing a range of vehicles the company describes as “robust and powerful”.

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