Orascom Construction secures $920m of awards in fourth quarter

The company's consolidated backlog reached $5.3bn at the end of 2020

Egypt’s Orascom Construction on Monday said it added new contracts worth $920 million to its backlog in the fourth quarter of 2020. Dana Smillie / The National
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Egypt-based Orascom Construction added about $920 million of new contract awards to its backlog in the fourth quarter of last year, pushing the amount of new awards during the year to $2.9 billion.

The new awards reflect the company’s "successful efforts to add high-quality projects" despite a pandemic-driven economic slowdown that has dried up work in some markets.

The annual awards were lower than the $3.5bn of new work won in the prior year, but it ended 2020 with a marginally higher consolidated backlog of $5.3bn, compared to $5.2bn at the end of 2019.

Projects in Egypt made up 62 per cent of the new awards secured during the fourth quarter of last year, a large portion of which was in transportation sector, the company said in a statement on Monday.

Contracts awarded in the US accounted for the balance and included a sizeable share of data centre projects, it said.

This year, Orascom and consortium partners Siemens Mobility and Arab Contractors have signed a deal with the Egyptian government to design and build the country's 1,000 kilometre high-speed rail network. The agreement was signed with the country's National Authority for Tunnels, Orascom said in a January 17 statement.

The initial rail line will be 460km long and will offer both passenger and cargo services. It will have an order value of about $3bn and will connect Ain Sokhna on the Red Sea to Al Alamein on the Mediterranean Sea while passing through the new administrative capital east of Cairo, according to the statement.

Orascom also recently signed a 1bn Egyptian pound ($63.6m) contract to build the Vida Marina Hotel & Yacht Club at Marassi for Emaar Properties, its flagship development on Egypt’s North Coast.