Nov 262012
Qatar tunnel contract issuedTue, 20 November 2012

Italian-based construction and civil engineering company Impregilo has won the contract to design and build a stormwater drainage tunnel in Doha, the capital of Qatar.

The contract, issued by the Public Works Authority of Qatar, is worth approximately €100 million.

The project involves the construction of a 9.5 km water collection tunnel with an excavation diameter of 4.5 m, and the construction of 21 access shaft.

The excavation of the tunnel will be executed using two tunnel boring machines, and is expected to be completed in approximately four years.

The tunnel will be used for the collection of the surface and groundwater in Doha.

 Posted by at 9:38 pm
Nov 262012

Updated: 2012-11-07 08:32

By Diao Ying in London ( China Daily)

Britain seen as gateway to other mature markets for Chinese

Top Chinese contractors are looking to take part in railway projects in the United Kingdom, seeing that as a way to promote their brands in developed economies.


Firms look to UK railway projects

A high-speed train passes through Weifang, Shandong province. Chinese infrastructure companies have already completed projects in developing economies, such as Algeria, Libya and Nigeria. [JIAO HONGTAO / FOR CHINA DAILY]

“We hope we can work on some good railway projects in the UK,” said Liu Yuling, general manager of China Civil Engineering Construction Corp, which has built railways in Algeria, Libya, Nigeria and other countries.

His words were echoed by CITIC Construction Co Ltd, another Chinese company, whose projects include a $3.5 billion housing project in Angola.

“We’ve been looking at the UK market for about a year,” said Xu Mingguang, vice-president of the company’s investment department. CITIC is considering undertaking large projects concerning transportation, water, and energy, among other things, Xu said.

The proposed cooperation comes on the tail of large investments Chinese companies have made into the UK.

Last week, China Investment Corp, manager of China’s sovereign wealth fund, bought shares in Heathrow Airport Holding, the operator of London’s Heathrow airport. Before that, in January, it had invested in Thames Water Utilities Ltd, which supplies water services to London and other places in Britain.

Chinese contractors, though, are only starting to work on large projects in developed economies and have not taken part in any in the UK.

That comes in contrast to what they have done in the Middle East and in African countries such as Libya and Nigeria, where they have helped build prominent railways.

A source of strength for Chinese companies is the support they receive from large State-owned Chinese banks, which have been expanding into developed economies.

Even so, they have little experience in investing in developed economies, according to Wang He, chairman of China International Contractors Association. Unlike many developing economies, the UK has long-standing legal, regulatory and technology requirements, and Chinese companies need to make sure they understand those before they bid on projects there.

The UK also has a history of letting foreign companies take part in infrastructure projects. Among the operators of its national railways are companies from Germany and the Netherlands.

Perhaps the greatest opportunity for Chinese companies lies in High Speed Two, a project that is to eventually result in a high-speed railway running from London to possibly as far north as the central belt of Scotland. The project will start around 2015. Robin Groth, deputy director of Rail, Department for Transport, said it is not yet known where the money for the project will come from.

“We are looking at all of the different options,” he said. “There are lots of opportunities.”

“UK rail has a strong appetite for foreign investment,” said Stuart Westgarth of the professional services company KPMG.

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 Posted by at 9:33 pm
Nov 262012
By Jan Burns, Jobs Correspondent | November 20, 2012
The work of civil engineers is evident in all kinds of industries, from buildings and infrastructures such as roadways, reservoirs, bridges to commercial high-rises. Photo: Marco Richter / iStockphoto

A “U.S. News and World Report Money” article recently placed civil engineering in the Top 10 Best Jobs in Technology for 2012.

“We see the work of civil engineers everywhere, in all kinds of industries, from buildings and infrastructures such as roadways, reservoirs, bridges to commercial high-rises,” said Rene Divina, discipline chief at Foster Wheeler USA Corp.

There are a number of career opportunities in this field depending on an individual’s interest and skills. One may end up designing high-rise buildings; or in the water sources industry, designing reservoirs; or in the transportation industry, designing roadways and bridges.

Some civil engineers pursue careers in construction or teaching. Specialist work includes structural analysis, architectural, traffic, geotechnical engineering and others.

“The best reward is to be able to witness the fruit of labor before our eyes and having impact on the lives of ordinary citizens,” Divina said.

Divina said civil engineers are not limited to infrastructures such as roadways and bridges. Civil engineers serve in all kinds of industries, and the energy sector in particular. Civil engineers also are involved in industrial plants.

“Civil engineering is rewarding because civil engineers have the privilege of seeing their designs turn from thoughts and concepts into huge, actual monuments due to their creativity,” said Curtis Stroup, manager, Civil/Structural Engineering and Design, Wood Group Mustang.

Civil engineers not only enjoy the challenge to their knowledge, skills and creativity, but have the satisfaction of seeing the positive effect they have on quality of life on a local, national and global level in their everyday lives, Stroup said.

They work for companies and governments, including the military. The types of companies are numerous and include those that provide a service, such as consulting or construction; and those that request the service, such as developers, energy companies and government entities.

“The name ‘civil engineer’ is misleading as it carries with it the assumption that all of their work is with civil (earthwork) projects. This is not the case,” Stroup said. “A civil engineer may have an emphasis area of aerospace, energy, environmental, forensics, geotechnical, marine, pipeline, structural, transportation, or water resources.”

Besides designing major infrastructure projects, their skills are needed in many types of projects and industries, including offshore oil and gas platforms, petrochemical facilities, airplanes, the scientific research dome at Antarctica, ships, housing developments such as The Woodlands or Cinco Ranch, pipelines, dredging of the ship channel, transmission towers for electrical lines, the new roller-coaster at Kemah, restaurants and piers.

Stroup said all business sectors that require design of structures, foundations, earthwork, drainage, dams, retaining walls, sewer systems and paving need civil engineers. The energy sector is a great employer of civil engineers. Offshore platforms taller than the Empire State Building, as well as chemical plants and refineries all need the talents of civil engineers for the structure, foundation, sewers, drainage and paving designs.

 Posted by at 9:28 pm