By Elizabeth Broomhall
Burj Khalifa builder not confident of winning Saudi supertall project
The Belgian contractor in the running for the world’s tallest tower contract has said it expects its Saudi-based competitor to win the deal.
Dubai-based firm Besix in partnership with El Seif Engineering & Contracting, is up against the Saudi Binladin Group for the 1-km high ‘Kingdom Tower’ in Jeddah, and is hoping to hear back from the decision-makers soon.
The contractors, which are both renowned for their flagship projects, were actually meant to find out which firm had been awarded the contract in September, but as yet as still waiting.
Speaking about the firm’s geographical expansion plans, Philippe Dessoy, general manager of subsidiary firm Six Construct, told Arabian Business' sister publication, Construction Week: “For more than a year we have been looking at Saudi Arabia.
"We put a tender together for the Kingdom Tower, and we’re on the shortlist with Binladin, but I expect the job to go to Binladin.”
That said, the GM of the Burj Khalifa builder, and firm responsible for Abu Dhabi’s recently-completed Sheikh Zayed Bridge, did add that he hoped to win a contract in Saudi by the middle of next year.
“We hope to win a project in Saudi as soon as possible, but we don’t expect anything for another few months. We hope to have a project before summer next year.”
With more than 200 floors, Kingdom Tower will stand higher than the Burj Khalifa, which is currently the world's tallest man-made structure at 828m.
Last year, developer Emaar, also responsible for the Burj Khalifa, was selected by Kingdom Holdings Company (KHC) to supervise construction of the tower and surrounding city development, estimated to cost a massive US$40 billion to build.
In September, the two contractors competing for the project had to revise their prices due to changes to the design.
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