08.00 Registration & Coffee
09.00 Opening Remarks from the Chair
09.10 Keynote Address: The State of Play
09.30 Panel Discussion: A Difficult Year in Review
At a time of sharp adjustments and increased volatility of oil prices, the economic outlook remains uncertain. As the country continues to prepare itself for the 2020 Expo, and presses on with its extraordinary and ambitious programme of infrastructure development, the construction sector, while suffering has nevertheless continued to lead growth in 2016, albeit at a slower pace. Although the sector is projected to continue expanding through 2017 and 2018, its pace of growth will be slow, with the emphasis moving to completing existing investments rather than starting to build new assets. With infrastructure investments plateaued, projects delayed, the upcoming introduction of VAT and PPPs, it is important to understand the current economic climate, the implications on the sector and find ways to counter the effects of the continued oil price drop.
10.15 Presentation: Regulatory and contractual requirements and mitigating risks
Contracts in the GCC commonly provide for a high level of risk transfer to consultants and contractors which amplify by the time MEP contracts are awarded. However, the full extent of risk transfer is often unclear due to the poor drafting of contract amendments or particular conditions. Constricted budgets, non-negotiable terms and delayed payments are common issues in most projects. This presentation will discuss how MEP Contractors can mitigate contract risk and innovative ways to secure payment from clients.
10.35 Energy efficiency, HVAC and the future of building automation
The future of the building automation market is exceptional. Advanced automation will not be just some accommodation with building information technology. It will be a full embrace of IT. Systems will be smarter, innovative, and sophisticated. They will automatically configure and integrate new equipment so they can optimise themselves, self-manage and self-heal. This session will provide insight into what the future holds for the building automation market as it relates to HVAC and MEP.
11.15 Morning Break & Networking
12.00 Panel Discussion: Retrofitting
While the Government is pushing retrofitting, the main barrier to the private sector following the government’s lead is the lack of awareness of the emerging retrofit technologies, coupled with inadequate capital being made available by local lenders to invest in retrofit programmes. The lack of awareness of the cost savings from energy efficient retrofit projects was influenced by a lack of confidence in manufacturer or supplier claims of energy efficiency coupled with the lack of available budget or finance to mount the projects. This session will lift the lid on retro-fitting, and what the industry requires to drive this important sector.
12.40 Fire & Safety: New codes etc.
The full extent of the UAE’s fire and safety legislation’s changes and how these are enforced remains to be seen. However, these reforms are the first step on a road to safer cities and an opportunity to further educate those living and working in the region about the importance of assessing hazards and threats to people and property – and how to mitigate the risk. But what impact will this have on the industry? What are the knock-on effects for MEP contractors and consultants?
13.20 Panel Discussion: Indoor air quality
In a country where sustainability is driving buildings regulations, there is an emphasis on minimising energy consumed by ventilation systems. However this can have a negative knock-on effect for indoor air quality. The trade-off between higher energy consumption due to increased ventilation rates and improved indoor environmental quality is a key question that designers and building operators need to answer.
15.00 End of MEP UAE Conference