Word from the Board
Unlike historians, who are meant to interpret the past, engineers are expected to predict and gauge the future. And this was our intention when, in 1964, we founded the company in Beirut to meet the rising demand for construction in the Middle East. Our assumption was correct. By 1965, we were already in Iraq, constructing the 300 km. long twin gas pipelines from Kirkuk to Baghdad.
We expanded our operation and executed various other projects, most notably, the construction of the Social Security Building, then the second largest building in Baghdad. By 1968, we were in Abu-Dhabi, constructing the first gas pipeline - with its dehydration and desulphurising plants - to transport gas from the oilfields at Shames to the first power station built in Abu-Dhabi.
Our work on various types of projects extended to other areas in the Middle East. By 1974 we covered 12 countries, including the Bahamas. In 1975, due to the eruption of the civil war in Lebanon, we moved to Europe and registered our group holding company at Luxembourg with two subsidiaries; one in the UK and the other in Jersey Cl.
Operating from London, the company was introduced to the international market and by early 1976 we secured a major contract in Kenya, to construct a 450 km. product pipeline, extending from Mombasa to Nairobi. At the same time, another major contract was secured in Qatar to supply their new power station at Ras Abufontas, Doha, with natural gas from the oilfields at Fahaheel, through a 30-inch line including its wellhead treatment plants.
A major oil pipeline project of 42 inches in diameter and 650 kilometers long was completed for the Arabian Oil Company, (AGECO) Libya, in 1983. Work in Kenya was an eye opener for the creation of a variety of projects in other African countries; water supply and distribution in Kenya and Nigeria, roads and highways in Tanzania and Botswana, oil and gas in Nigeria and Ghana, and the building of a new university in Senegal.
Being in Europe, we have also undertaken some important projects, such as the Parque da Floresta golf and leisure complex in the Algarve, Portugal, comprising an 18-hole golf club with 150 villas and apartments. In London, we constructed a number of commercial and residential projects, including the Millennium Windsor-Slough hotel, comprising of 219 rooms, a health club with an indoor swimming pool, and a covered parking lot with space for 250 cars, on 2 levels. The hotel was completed in the record time of 17 months, an achievement which has still to be challenged.
An operation in Texas, USA, was in property development and covered contracts for the construction of roads and utilities into Houston City.
Results of the past few years have justified our determination and confidence in our achievement so far, as well as our vision for the future. Now we find ourselves constructing a new 220 megawatt power station in Ghana; a 48-inch gas pipeline for Sonatrac, in Algeria; a 36-inch gas pipeline for NNPC Nigeria; upgrading and restoring the airport terminal for Senegal Airport in Dakar; compressor stations at Benin for the new West African gas pipeline from Nigeria to Ghana, and a new power station at Congo-Brazzaville. All these projects are being managed simultaneously and we also can expect more major contracts in the immediate future. Our orders have tripled in the past two years, as has our turnover.
We consider this a distinctive success, which we shall continue to pursue in the years ahead, achieved by our enthusiasm and a huge amount of honest hard work.