Mekdad: all set for the ‘big leap’

GULF Extrusions, extruded products manufacturer, is setting up a commercial office in Egypt in anticipation of coordinating greater exports to the African state.

The office will begin functioning by year’s end to capitalise on a growing market fuelled by housing sector demand, said the company, a member of the UAE-based Al Ghurair Group.

Gulf Extrusions, which has a plant in Dubai and is likely to begin production at another plant in Abu Dhabi in the fourth quarter, estimates that the market for extruded aluminium products in Egypt could rise from 85,000 tonnes a year to around 300,000 tonnes in coming years, largely because of the need to build one million housing units a year until 2020.

“There will be a big leap and it will drive demand for extruded aluminium products in the region as well,” general manager Modar Al Mekdad told Reuters on the sidelines of the CRU Aluminium Conference in Dubai.

“We already sell our products there through our local customers but we want to have a legal set-up so that we have direct contact with the Egyptian market,” Al Mekdad said.

Gulf Extrusions has output of 50,000 tonnes a year through its Dubai plant, while the new Abu Dhabi plant will take output to 75,000 tonnes initially and to 100,000 tonnes by the end of 2016.

The company is actively engaged in research and innovation, launching recently the Middle East’s first fully tested fire-rated aluminium door, Fire-X87.

“With a fire rating integrity of 90 minutes, the company’s fire-resistant door has been proven to significantly reduce fire risk and promote higher levels of safety and security. The fire test signifies Gulfex’s firm goal to provide high quality products to keep its customers safe and protected,” a Gulf Extrusions statement said.

“During the test held at Thomas Bell Wright Fire Testing facilities in Dubai, the fire-resistant door was subjected to and successfully withstood a temperature of over 900 degree Celsius for 90 minutes. In conducting the test, [Gulf Extrusions] complied with the international fire regulations and standards. This is in line with the company’s strong commitment to follow global standards in manufacturing its products as evident in its Fire-X87, the Middle East’s first locally manufactured top-of-the-line aluminium door and window system,” it added.