Cityscape Jeddah 2014 opened yesterday with an inaugural ceremony conducted by His Royal Highness Prince Misha’al bin Majed bin Abdulaziz, Governor of Jeddah. The 5th edition of the renowned real estate investment event welcomed a record number of attendees and visitors to the exhibition and Jeddah Real Estate Summit. Participants include regional and international investors, developers, architects and designers, governmental authorities, key decision makers and senior executives involved in the design and construction of both public and private real estate developments.
Commenting on the year on year success of the event, Dr. Abdullah Bin Mahfouz, Chairman, National Exhibition Company, organizers of Cityscape Jeddah, said: “Cityscape Jeddah continues to go from strength to strength. This year we have witnessed increased participation from banks and home financing companies offering exclusive deals to Cityscape visitors. We have also noticed increased participation from regional real estate companies attracted by the opportunities in Saudi Arabia’s real estate sector which is thriving in the Kingdom’s prosperous and stable economic climate.”
Speaking at the Jeddah Real Estate Summit, Eng. Ahmed Abu Alola, Director of Operations and Developments at Ewaan Global Residential Company pointed out that, the Saudi government aims to increase home ownership to 80% by 2024, through boosting the supply of affordable housing. As a result, private and public developers need to build a total of 1.65 million homes over the next six years, Looking at the longer term, a minimum of 150,000 new units are needed per year to fill the housing shortage over the next 10 years.
He went on to say: “While this will bring major opportunities for the Kingdom’s real estate, construction and home financing companies, construction management remains an internal challenge for the developers in Saudi Arabia and there is an urgent need to adopt global best practices and technologies to address this issue.”
One such technology is Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (AAC) which has been pioneered in Ewaan’s flagship Alfareeda residential community. AAC’s many features, benefited the project including; high thermal insulation resulting in energy saving; high strength and durability; light weight; easy workability; noise reduction and resistance to fire.
Cityscape Jeddah is always at the forefront of innovation, and this year several of the exhibitors are displaying the technical advancements and techniques which they have developed. One such exhibitor is Sumou Real Estate Company who is showcasing a 4D simulation of their projects for the first time ever.
Sumou is developing Dahiat Sumou, a visionary city to be built on the western edge of the Makkah Holy Region. Updating the delegates on the mega project, Eng. Khaled Al-Telmesani, CEO of Sumou, said: “we are proud to sponsor Cityscape for the fifth year in a row. This year we will be providing a 4D simulation of our projects for the first time ever, enabling Cityscape visitors to view this ambitious project that will provide housing solutions to more than 25,000 people through an integrated community backed with full services.”
Commenting on how Cityscape Jeddah is an important contributor to the growth and development of the Kingdom’s real estate sector, keynote speaker at the Jeddah Real Estate Summit, Hisham Malaika, Partner and Head of Property and Social Infrastructure at Arcadis in Saudi Arabia, said: “The Jeddah Real Estate Summit at Cityscape Jeddah is the ideal platform to network with the region’s top real estate and investment professionals and collaborate as a whole to strengthen the local real estate industry.
“As part of our contribution to this year’s event we are showcasing local findings of our 2014 Global Built Asset Performance Index (BAPI) report which assesses how the performance of built assets contributes to a nation’s GDP and how countries can boost their built asset performance.”
He went on to say: “The 2014 BAPI report reveals Saudi Arabia as the fastest growing market in built asset performance, forecasted to grow by 70 per cent over the next decade. The full global report will be launched on the 7th of May for industry leaders in Saudi Arabia.”
Another key speaker at the summit, Mounib Hammoud, CEO of Jeddah Economic Company, developer of The Kingdom Tower and City, gave an update on The Kingdom Tower and City development and how it is expected to alter the shoreline’s character, saying: “With the rise of The Kingdom Tower and City, Jeddah will soon have a skyline that will identify the city’s position as an urban and business destination. The project is happening and the whole master plan has been revamped to have a mixed used development with all the components, creating an urban fabric with office, retail, hotels and residential accommodation.
“We have completed recently the foundation work for the tower which is considered the biggest piece of concrete on earth and has set new world records in the construction industry. We have now started work above ground and the first parts of the project will be open and operational in 2018 giving Jeddah a new downtown with the world’s tallest tower that will bring pride and prestige to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”
Commenting on the Jeddah property market, Mr. Hammoud said: “The property market is in a positive momentum and Jeddah’s real estate topography is being transformed. Saudi Arabia’s growth is at its peak and government spending is the highest ever and this is expected to continue for the next five to 10 years, fueling the economy in the process. As far as the Jeddah real estate market is concerned, the city is home to around 3.5 million people and the population growth rate is about 4%. Jeddah is moving upward and the property market is moving with it. The government is playing a huge role in helping the market to grow and due to the Kingdom having an open economy we are witnessing the formation of a very effective partnership between the public and private sectors.”
This year, Cityscape Jeddah 2014 also includes three days of discussion titled Future Makkah with day one devoted to discussing How Islamic Financing Contributes to the Prevention of Future Financial Crises.
Cityscape Jeddah 2014 comprises a mix of specialized activities including a three-day exhibition, the two-day Jeddah Real Estate Summit on May 4-5, and the coveted Cityscape Awards celebrating excellence in real estate development and architecture in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, which will be announced on May 5.
Supporting the vision for growth in the real estate industry, Cityscape Jeddah 2014 is sponsored by Sumou Real Estate (Principal Sponsor) and Ewaan Global Residential Company (Founding Sponsor) along with the Saudi Commission for Tourism and Antiquities (Official Supporter).
There is no doubt that Jeddah Urban Development and Real Estate Investment Event – Cityscape Jeddah is the leading real estate event in the Kingdom, supporting the government’s vision for growth in the real estate industry, highlighting iconic architecture and innovative development, and providing direct access to the region’s biggest real estate market – Saudi Arabia.
For more information please contact:
Eman Al Zari
Senior Media Relations Executive
TRACCS, Jeddah, KSA