Firm set up to run $814m Bahrain Expo City
Manama, June 15, 2010
A new company has been established to operate a BD307 million ($814 million) Expo City being built in Bahrain.
The move was announced yesterday by Industry and Commerce Minister and head of the Bahrain Exhibitions and Conventions Authority (Beca) Dr Hassan Fakhro.
Expo City, near the Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, will be run by the Bahrain Exhibitions and Conventions Company.
'The new value adding enterprise will spearhead the exhibition industry and consolidate Bahrain's status in this vital economic sector,' said a Beca statement.
The Beca, Bahrain Properties Holding Company (Mumtalakat) and the Bahrain Chamber of Commerce and Industry will have joint stakes in the newly-established consortium.
'The new initiative is of utmost importance as it chimes perfectly with the leadership's directives and the Bahrain Economic Vision 2030,' said Dr Fakhro.
The ministry submitted the project to the Economic Development Board last year as part of its 2009-12 strategy and was given the go-ahead.
Expo City, to be developed in two phases, will be 10 times the size of the existing Bahrain International Exhibition and Convention Centre, Sanabis, and will cost an estimated BD307 million.
It will be built on an overall area covering 150,000 square metres.
The first phase is expected to be complete by 2013 and will comprise a 100,000-sqm, purpose-built exhibition centre.
A total of 75,000 sqm will be demarcated for sub-divisible exhibition space, with an integrated 25,000 sqm convention centre.
A 50,000 sqm sub-divisible exhibition and convention centre will also be developed as part of phase two, said Beca.
Expo city is expected to lure high-profile functions and world-class exhibitors and boost Bahrain's share of the market.
'The world-class hub will ensure top services for customers to project Bahrain as a regional and international destination,' said Dr Fakhro.
He stressed the ever-growing importance of the exhibition industry and its tangible contribution to the gross domestic product.
The new company will be run on a commercial basis, to ensure sustained value-added dividends and return on investment for shareholders.
Dr Fakhro paid tribute to the private sector, describing it as a viable partner for the government in the economic development momentum.-TradeArabia News Service