Hard Work Pays Off

GS E&C comes away with largest single order in Egypt worth $1.8 billion

GS Engineering & Construction Co. won the largest single construction order in Egypt worth $1.8 billion to build an oil refinery from a state-run oil company, the company said recently.
The company said Vice President Woo Sang-yong in charge of plant construction signed a contract Aug. 29 in Cairo with officials of the Egyptian oil company. The project is worth so much that its value is greater than total amounts of projects that Korean builders got from Egypt up until now, the company said.
It also is the largest single project that Korean builders won in the Middle East so far. The order calls for building an oil refinery with a daily refining capacity of 150,000 barrels in Mostorod, some 20 km north of Cairo.
GS E&C has already been engaged in the construction of a benzene plant worth $350 million in Egypt since December last year targeted for completion next year. The plant is being built near Alexandria and is capable of producing 100,000 tons of alkyle benzene, a raw material for synthetic detergent. GS E&C officials feel that the Egyptian authorities took notice of their construction skills and have decided to award the oil refinery project to them.
They said the Egyptian government has been making large investments in its major industries including petrochemical, plants, not far behind in scale to BRICS countries, emerging as a major construction market in the world.
The Egyptian government has been a 20-year plan since 2004 to build large industrial plants including power, natural gas treatment and petrochemical plants all related to spurring its oil refining industry. The country annually pumped up 250 million barrels of crude oil from its oil fields estimated to contain 3.7 billion barrels of crude oil and ready to be tapped.
But the country has been importing refined oil products such as gasoline from Saudi Arabia and the United States due to the shortage of its oil refining facilities.
GS Holding Chairman Hur Chang-soo presided over a meeting of the group'top executives totaling some 150 at GS Tower in Yeoksam-dong, southern Seoul recently.
Chairman Hur told the meeting that they should check up on the impact the KOR-US FTA will have on business in the country, especially, on their companies and be prepared for the changes to be caused by the free trade agreement which will further open the economy to foreign countries.
The chairman said the group has been able to meet its targets during the Q1 and encouraged the executives for doing their best to achieve the targets. But he went on to warn that they should pay attention to the changing management environment rather than feeling relaxed over the Q1 results.
He said as he glanced over the business conditions ahead, he found that they seem harder than first imagined early in the year, mentioning China's restrictive policies to hold down inflation and unstable U.S. property market, causing its financial market to tremble.
Hur said part of domestic indicators have been improved, but many experts agree that there still remain the danger of market changes in high stages. He also said the projections for oil prices and interest rate boosts in major countries don't seem to be normal in outlining the risk factors facing the management environment.
The chairman also warned that various unstable factors could undermine the growth of the world economy including the U.S. economy, adding that domestic demand is being contracted in general with real estate market cooling. Despite the concerns, the new economies like those of India and China continue to grow sustaining its growth attained last year and political situations in northeast Asia show signs of improving including the relations between the U.S. and North Korea, touching on positive changes in the business environment.
In the meantime, Chairman Hur received an honorary doctorate from St Louis University. The university located in St. Louis, Missouri, said Hur, who earned a MBA at the university, said he set up a core management vision and ideals in a short time since the GS Group separated from the LG Group in Mach, 2005.
As the head of the new conglomerate, he actively involved himself in running the group's affiliates, establishing the group engaged in a wide-range of business areas, including energy, distribution, and service in a short period of time, the university said in citing Hur's achievement, which was good enough to earn the kudos.
The university also cited Hur's charity work to help the poor, contributing funds to various charities with his own funds. He set up the Namchon Welfare Fund to help the low-income families to build a base for them to find means to sustain their livelihood and provide free medical services, education, and scholarships to do his social work as a successful business executive. nw

President Kim Kap-yeol of GS E&C

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