The project awards in the GCC region expanded during the first three months of the year despite global economic challenges such as the financial sector turmoil, elevated inflation, and the ongoing Ukraine-Russia conflict, according to Kamco Invest, a non-banking financial powerhouse in the region.

The total value of GCC contracts awarded increased by 54.7 per cent year-on-year (y-o-y) during Q1 to $29.9 billion as compared to $19.3 billion last year, spearheaded by the Saudi market which alone accounted for 44.6 per cent of the contracts awarded in the region.

This was the second highest by value of quarterly project awards since the start of 2022, stated the report.

All GCC project markets witnessed year-on-year project awards growth during Q1-2023 except for Bahrain which remains the smallest project market in the region, said the report by Kamco Invest.

Saudi Arabia remained the largest projects market in the GCC during Q1-2023, it stated, adding the country’s project awards recorded 17.9 per cent growth during the quarter to reach $13.3 billion over $11.3 billion last year.  The kingdom’s growth in contracts during the quarter was mainly fuelled by Saudi Aramco bumper profits during FY-2022.

According to the report, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Qatar jointly represented 84.1 per cent of the overall projects in the GCC.

On the UAE scenario, Kamco Invest said the project awards more than doubled to reach $10 billion during the quarter while Kuwait’s contract awards reached $1.8 billion compared to $407 million last year, recording the highest percentage year-on-year contract awards increase in the region during the quarter.