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Sector remains upbeat about Middle East

Sector remains upbeat about Middle East

The facilities management (FM) sector in the Middle East remains optimistic about prospects for growth over the coming year, despite some uncertainty remaining with the economy, according to research conducted by the British Institute of Facilities Management (BIFM) in partnership with and FM EXPO.

The FM Business Confidence Monitor – Middle East, a survey of FM professionals from the facilities management sector in the region found that 59% describe the outlook of the facilities management business environment as ‘positive’ or ‘very positive’ and over half (57%) expect it to improve over the next 12 months.

While respondents recognise that fluctuations with the economy could impact their business over the coming year (56%), they cited competition in the market as the biggest challenge. Interviews and qualitative insights show that competition in the region is being driven by an increasing number of FM companies operating as the FM sector matures across the region.

However, an emerging issue in this year’s survey is regulation and enforcement, with 21% of respondents listing this as a concern. Again insights show that advancements in this area may favour larger organisations who are better equipped to respond to the region’s regulatory environment, where a gradual increase in the amount of regulation governing FM activities is expected.

A sustained government drive to create smart cities in the region is set to increase the pressure on FM providers to deliver innovative approaches across all services. As a direct result, 51% of respondents expect to see an increase in investment for research and development, a 4% increase from 2015.

The BCM research was created as a result of a survey and supported by a series of interviews. The aim is to establish a complete view of FM market confidence by canvassing the views of the sector’s senior decision makers as well as the teams on the ground delivering those services throughout the Middle East.

James Sutton, Chief Executive of BIFM, said, “It’s encouraging to see the continued optimism regarding the long-term prospects for the FM sector in the Middle East.
“Having just launched BIFM’s operations in the UAE, it is positive to see a continuing appetite for training, qualifications and professional development with 70% seeing qualifications as essential for their career development.”

Jaafar Shubber, Senior Project Manager, FM EXPO said “Facilities management is an industry that just continues to grow here. The sheer volume of construction within the region, increasing tourist numbers and the fact that investors appreciate that the buildings here are very modern and sophisticated means that facilities management will only grow in importance.”

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