Middle East Steel Industry set for Major Growth in 2015
The Middle East steel sector is forecast for significant growth in the coming year as the GCC states are among the highest consumers of iron and steel products, well above the global average of 240kg per person, according to a report by the World Steel Association.
Consumption of finished steel is 323 kg per capita in Saudi Arabia, 385 kg in Kuwait, 1,288 kg in Qatar and 1,309 kg in UAE, thanks largely to the proliferation of mega construction projects including those underway for the Qatar 2022 World Cup.
These figures were released in connection with the announcement of the inaugural edition of Metal Middle East 2015, the international trade fair for metallurgical technology, thermo process technology, foundry machinery and metal working tools that will be held on January 10 to 13, 2015 in the Dubai International Convention & Exhibition Centre.
Satish Khanna, General Manager, Al Fajer Information and Services, co-organizers of Metal Middle East 2015 with German exhibition organizer Messe Dusseldorf, said: "Iron and steel producing countries, especially the European ones, represent a promising new market for Dubai exports. Many countries showed high potential for imports of iron and steel and Dubai is always looking for new markets to export iron and steel."
Jeen Joshua, Group Project Manager of Metal Middle East 2015, added: "The UAE is regarded as the most important hub for trade between Europe and Asia as far as metals industry is concerned. Huge investments in construction projects are dramatically driving this industry. Metal 2015 offers the joining, cutting and surfacing industries of the West an ideal platform for making forays into this promising market."
The Middle Eastern states and the UAE possess one of the largest oil reserves in the world, as well as extensive natural gas deposits, and are among the wealthiest nations on the planet. Oil business, tourism and goods and services are the most profitable economic segments.
The expansion of industrial sectors, high technology and tourism benefit the development of infrastructure measures. The continuing construction boom, major real estate investments and the rising per capita income have led to a rapid increase in the demand for steel and tube products. Experts estimate that the consumption of finished steel products will reach approximately 8 million tons by the end of 2014.
5 minutes with... Janthana Kaenprakhamroy, CEO, Tapoly
Founder and CEO of award-winning insurtech firm Tapoly, Janthana Kaenprakhamroy heads up Europe’s first on-demand insurance platform for the gig economy, winning industry awards, innovating in the digital insurance space, and leading with inclusivity.
Here, Business Chief talks to Janthana about her leadership style and skills.
What do you do, in a nutshell?
I’m founder and CEO of Tapoly, a digital MGA providing a full stack of commercial lines insurance specifically for SMEs and freelancers, as well as a SaaS solution to connect insurers with their distribution partners. We build bespoke, end-to-end platforms encompassing the whole customer journey, but can also integrate our APIs within existing systems. We were proud to win Insurance Provider of the Year at the British Small Business Awards 2018 and receive silver in the Insurtech category at the Efma & Accenture Innovation in Insurance Awards 2019.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I try to be as inclusive a leader as possible. I’m committed to creating space for everyone to shine. Many of the roles at Tapoly are performed by women and I speak at industry events to encourage more people to get involved in insurance/insurtech. Similarly, I always try to maintain a growth mindset. I think it’s important to retain values to support learning and development, like reliability, working hard and punctuality.
What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?
Build your network and seek advice. As a leader, you need smart people around you to help you grow your business. It’s not about personally being the best, but being able to find resources and get help where needed.
How do you see leadership changing in a COVID world?
I think the pandemic has proven the importance of inclusive leadership so that everyone feels supported and valued. It’s also shown the importance of being flexible as a leader. We’ve had to remain adaptable to continue delivering high levels of customer service. This flexibility has also been important when supporting employees as everyone has had individual pressures to deal with during this time. Leaders should continue to embed this flexibility within their organisations moving forward.
They say ‘from every crisis comes opportunity’, what opportunities do you see?
The past year has been challenging, but it has also proven the importance of digital transformation in insurance. When working from home was required, it was much harder for insurers to adjust who had not embedded technology within their operating processes because they did not have data stored in the cloud and it caused communication delays with concerned customers at a time when this communication should have been a priority, which ultimately impacts the level of customer satisfaction. This demonstrates the importance of what we are trying to achieve at Tapoly in driving digitalisation in insurance and making communication between insurers and distribution partners seamless.
What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?
Start sooner, don’t be afraid to take (calculated) risks and make sure you raise enough money to get you through the initial seed stage.