Economy & Business Middle East
empowerME Conversations October 26, 2021

Building growth: The future of MENA’s construction sector

By Atlantic Council

In Season 2, Episode 5 of empowerME Conversations podcast, host and Atlantic Council empowerME Director Amjad Ahmad speaks with Consolidated Contractors Company (CCC) Chairman Samer Khoury about the future of the construction industry, how companies can partner with and support startups, policies needed to boost the region’s economic growth, and ways to improve the talent pipeline and bring more women into the workforce.

The population growth in our region is very high compared to the rest of the world, and you need the infrastructure to support that, whether it’s hospitals, schools, power plants, etc. So I am optimistic that in 2022, 2023, 2024, we’ll see growth in the construction industry.”

Samer Khoury, Consolidated Contractors Company (CCC) Chairman

Key Takeaways

0:00 Intro
1:36 Samer gives an overview of the region as it comes out of Covid and the push for megaconstruction across the Mena region
3:19 Samer talks about civil infrastructure and big commercial cities on rise like Neom, and how they are pushing towards greener energy
7:13 Samer explains how Covid slowed the process of project completion due to materials having slower transport times and being stuck outside of the countries
10:58 Samer discusses the countries currently with the highest FDI and how they are opening up to be more attractive to investors
12:50 Samer talks about how companies are creating STEM programs through universities to help college graduates enter the field of work with the knowledge needed to succeed
16:48 Samer mentions how Covid changed the work from home model and how online meetings can truly save on time and travel expenses and be beneficial to many companies
19:03 Samer breaks down the number and percentages of women in the workforce and how they are trying to grow with more women in the industry
21:52 Samer talks about the use of small companies and their partnerships so they can help develop their products in a beneficial way for both parties
27:27 Amjad raises a question on geopolitical risk and temperatures in certain regions being a risk factor for investments
30:17 Samer shares three general trends that make him excited for the future
35:46 Samer gives his predictions and updates on where he see’s his company CCC moving in the next decade

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The empowerME Conversations podcast features conversations with business and government leaders shaping the Middle East. The podcast sheds light on key opportunities and challenges for companies and governments, and Season 2 will focus on CEOs in the region.

Related Experts: Amjad Ahmad