Under the theme of “Building Your World”, the increased number of companies showing at the BIG 5 is in direct response to the growing regional demand for quality Portuguese building materials, such as ornamental stone, tiles and ceramics.
In particular, ornamental stone like granite and limestone complement the quality and variety of Portugal’s marble, which due to its beige hues, has become much sought after in the local market. Portugal delivers in high style with Moca Crème, Moleanos and Rosal, amongst other colours and types such as the famous Rosa Aurora. Today, top architects, renowned artists and creative designers use Portuguese marble with different finishes, to apply to all manner of interior and exterior finishes.
Carlos Carvalho Costa, Director of the Portuguese Trade Centre, based in Dubai commented,
“Portugal has built many worlds throughout history and it is testimony to the quality and diversity of our products, as well as the Moorish influence, that they are in such demand throughout the Middle East”.
Portugal is also ‘the country’ of the hand-painted tile for wall and floor coverings. The cultural art form of hand-painted tiles dates back to the Arabic influence of the Moors, who dominated the Iberian Peninsula in 711. Over time they have evolved from geometric Moorish lace-like and looping designs into European plant and animal themes which gradually progressed from Gothic to the pure Renaissance style. Today the designs and concepts have emerged in to a contemporary form, but still retain their traditional appeal. Terracotta shingles used on rooftops, along with the predominance of domes and arches is yet another reflection of the Arabic influence on Portugal’s architecture.
Traditionally Portugal’s major export markets are France, Spain, Germany, UK, USA and Angola, but companies are now looking at the potential of the markets in the Middle East, which is underscored by companies such as Alelia a quality ceramics manufacturer, who is now realising the exceptional market potential from their newly-opened office in Dubai.
In addition to ornamental stone and ceramics, Portugal offers a wide range of metal products for residential and hotel fittings as well as building framework and finishings. Portuguese manufacturers of post-tensioning steel strands and low relaxation strands used in heavy construction retain an enviable reputable due to their high levels of performance and conformity with international standards.
Costa concluded, “With the boom in the Middle East construction industry set to continue for many years to come, we are confident that Portuguese building materials will play an increasingly important role in that development”.
The Portuguese Pavilion can be found in Hall 3 and in Sheikh Rashid Hall.
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