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ME steel consumption on the rise

Sharjah, January 21, 2013

The Middle East region is set to buck the global trend of a drop in steel consumption and rebound to a growth of 5.7 per cent in 2012 following a 2 per cent contraction in the previous year, a report said.

The global growth forecast for steel consumption is lowered to 2.1 per cent during 2012, added the new report by the World Steel Association (WSA).

“The growth is facilitated by construction and infrastructure projects being initiated by regional economies that have benefitted from high oil prices over the past three years,” said Saif Mohammed Al Midfa, director-general, Expo Centre Sharjah, which recently hosted SteelFab 2013, a major steel fabrication event.

The ninth edition of SteelFab, the region’s most comprehensive trade event for the steel fabrication, metal working and metal manufacturing industry, was organised by Expo Centre Sharjah with the support of the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry from January 14 to 17. It showcased machinery and equipment in metal forming, surface preparation & finishing, grinding & cutting, machining & other allied engineering disciplines.

“The regional steel fabrication and metal working industry is a direct beneficiary of this growth, which was amply demonstrated at the SteelFab 2013 through better than expected visitor turnout and sales leads,” he added.

The fair hosted around 250 direct exhibitors from 24 countries representing more than 600 brands of steel machinery, welding equipment and surface preparation and attracted 7296 visitors.

Exhibitors at the show were unanimous in their opinion that there is no other show in the region that has enough market penetration than SteelFab. They also find it the best platform to reach out to the markets in Saudi Arabia and other GCC countries.

They also found a lot more activities in the market this time than the past two years when the demand was rather stagnant. The growing confidence in the economy and a slew of new projects have given the much-needed boost to the market, which was clearly visible during the show, they said.

While many of the exhibitors sold most of their machinery that were on display, all the participants used the opportunity to enhance their sales pipeline and successfully demonstrate their products efficiency and cost-effectiveness to a discerning audience.

Rockwood representative said that SteelFab is the main show for the regional steel fabrication and metal working industry and the event gives a head start to the company for its operations for the whole year.

“We find SteelFab to be an excellent launch platform and introduced six new products that were well received by the industry,” said Basanth Raghavan of Rockwood. “The company has participated in other shows, but the response at SteelFab has always been exceptional.”

A key component of the show, the live displays were fully utilized by participants to promote their new machines and innovations, which, they said, would have been an arduous task at regular company showrooms where it will be difficult to draw customers and convince them to place an order.

“The event has enabled us to market new equipment, which will go a long way in helping achieve our targeted growth,” said Nawab Ibrar Ahmed, sales manager, Lion International Middle East.

Special focus areas targeting specific industrial segments enabled industry representatives to talk to several machinery dealers directly and present their requirements for welding & cutting equipment, machine tools and pipe & tube machinery.

A recent study has also forecasted that the regional industry is expected to continue growth in 2013, bolstered by increasing infrastructure spend, greater industrialization and a higher demand for homes fuelled by a growing population and falling family sizes. – TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Steel | Sharjah | Trade fair | metal | SteelFab | Fabrication |

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