MEP Middle East - - EDITORÊS NOTE - Ra­jiv Ravin­dran Pil­lai

We have all had our ups and downs last year. The MEP sec­tor, es­pe­cially has had some chal­leng­ing times, so I have been told by the sev­eral con­trac­tors and con­sul­tants I spoke with. Cash flow is­sues are still per­sist­ing which can be detri­men­tal to MEP projects com­plet­ing on time or even worse, com­pa­nies go­ing un­der. The MEP sec­tor there­fore needs to be aware and pre­pare for ad­ver­sity. But no mat­ter how chal­leng­ing the times, you need to keep your chin up. The theme that I have no­ticed last year and what I be­lieve will be in the com­ing years is the use of build­ing in­for­ma­tion mod­el­ling (BIM). Co­or­di­nat­ing the me­chan­i­cal, elec­tri­cal and plumb­ing (MEP) dis­ci­plines dur­ing con­struc­tion can in­volve sig­nif­i­cant chal­lenges. How­ever, build­ing in­for­ma­tion mod­el­ling (BIM) technology is now help­ing to im­prove MEP co­or­di­na­tion by ad­dress­ing var­i­ous de­sign is­sues. En­gi­neer­ing Con­tract­ing Com­pany LLC (ECC) will com­plete the Rawda project, in Dubai, cur­rently 3.2% ahead of sched­ule, in a timely man­ner and within bud­get due to the suc­cess­ful adop­tion and im­ple­men­ta­tion of BIM technology. The technology al­lows ef­fec­tive vi­su­al­i­sa­tion and col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween ar­chi­tec­tural, struc­tural and MEP from the out­set, so they all tie in nicely with each other.

The other buzz­word is pre­fab­ri­ca­tion, with more con­sul­tants and con­trac­tors adopt­ing a smarter method of con­struc­tion. The Build­ing Ser­vices Re­search and In­for­ma­tion As­so­ci­a­tion (BSRIA) in the UK found that the use pre­fab­ri­cated MEP mo­d­ules re­sult in 34% to 90% re­duc­tion in in­stal­la­tion labour. Sev­eral Expo 2020 sites will see the use of pre­fab­ri­ca­tion in its projects.

An­other in­ter­est­ing news is the dis­trict cool­ing sec­tor be­ing reg­u­lated by Reg­u­la­tory and Su­per­vi­sory Bureau for elec­tric­ity and wa­ter in Dubai (RSB) in Dubai. Faisal Rashid, di­rec­tor, De­mand Side Man­age­ment, Supreme Coun­cil of En­ergy, told me at The Big 5 last year that “the mar­ket will be reg­u­lated by RSB in terms of licensing, billing etc. RSB will have a cer­tain re­spon­si­bil­ity, even in dis­putes”.

So it is cer­tainly an in­ter­est­ing time to be in and much to look for­ward to. We all need to em­brace th­ese pos­i­tive changes. as we move for­ward. In an in­ter­view with Nathan Hanns, gen­eral man­ager at ALEMCO (see page 16), he said that cash­flow is­sues will re­solve it­self in the fu­ture. It helps to keep a pos­i­tive mind­set and be as adap­tive to change as pos­si­ble.

On that note, I wish you all the very best 2019 and a happy new year!

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