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Mon 24 May 2010 07:40 PM

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Besix wins $2.7bn Abu Dhabi building orders

Contractor also hopes to recieve 40% of $27.2m owed by Nakheel in June.

Besix wins $2.7bn Abu Dhabi building orders
CONTRACTS WON: Besix, the Belgian contractor that helped build the Burj Khalifa, said that it had won $2.7bn worth of orders in Abu Dhabi. (Getty Images)

Besix Group, the Belgian contractor that helped build the world’s tallest tower in Dubai, won 10 billion dirhams ($2.7 billion) of orders in Abu Dhabi in the last two months.

Contracts include $1.3 billion for the Cleveland Clinic and $408.3 million for Adnoc Tower, chief executive officer Johan Beerlandt said today in an interview in Abu Dhabi, the UAE’s capital. In addition, the company secured “a couple of billion riyals” of work in Qatar.

The CEO said: “The Middle East is still a very important segment for us because it’s about 40 percent to 45 percent of our business."

He added: “As Dubai has dried out, we are concentrating more on Abu Dhabi and Qatar like everybody else.”

Separately, the company is owed about $2.7 million by Dubai based developer Nakheel and Besix “hopes that 40 percent of the payment will be received in June,” Beerlandt said.

Nakheel, the builder of palm shaped islands off Dubai’s coast that has fallen behind on its bills, is restructuring $10.5 billion of debt and has asked trade creditors to wait five years to receive full payment.

The Dubai government in March pledged to pump $8 billion in cash into Nakheel to help it pay contractors and suppliers and complete developments.

Besix has stopped marine work for Nakheel on a sewage treatment plant on the Palm Jumeirah island, the CEO said.

Besix has about $408.3 billion in ongoing projects in Dubai and is currently owed about 500 million dirhams.

The company’s main customers currently are Dubai’s municipality and Emaar Properties, the developer of world’s tallest tower known as Burj Khalifa, Beerlandt said.

The company is negotiating final payments for work on Burj Khalifa after Emaar increased the tower’s height to 828 meters (2,716 feet) from a planned 725 meters when Besix bid for the work.

That raised the contract’s value “considerably,” the CEO said.

Besix, based in Brussels, is 50 percent owned by Egypt’s Orascom Construction Industries, according to its website.