Bahrain has a fine record of diversification but the shift towards less reliance on oil seems to be a never ending process, oil prices being as volatile as they have been over the past decade. So it was no surprise that the kingdom’s finance minister, Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Khalifa, called for further diversification of income sources.
Aluminium Bahrain (Alba) is gearing itself for “a very difficult year” fuelled by continuing low aluminium prices as it makes progress in its Line 6 expansion project which is likely to spur the national downstream industry, already one of the most vibrant in the Middle East.
Asry, the region’s most experienced ship and rig repair yard, expects to approximately equal its 2014 revenues of $163 million in 2015 with ship repairs performing best among its three main divisions.
Majaal Warehouse Co, a wholly owned subsidiary of Kuwait’s First Bahrain Real Estate Company, is now home to more than 60 SMEs with a majority of businesses run by Bahrainis. The hub prides itself in its flexible operations including facilities management, conducting of feasibility studies and supervision of development and construction.
Gulf Aluminium Rolling Mill Company (Garmco), now in the final stages of closing down unprofitable operations internationally, is exploring the possibility of setting up a new subsidiary in Vietnam through its Singapore office.
Sulb Steel, a joint venture between Bahrain-based Foulath (51 per cent) and Japan’s Yamato Kogyo, has embarked on cost-cutting in the wake of low steel prices and dumping, a senior official says. “We’re still in the ramping up stage.
Higher premium prices for metal from Aluminium Bahrain (Alba) and generally weak market conditions globally have forced Bahrain Alloys Manufacturing Company (Bamco) to curtail production significantly in 2015.