Bilfinger is a global German industrial services provider, with a portfolio that covers the entire value chain from consulting, engineering, manufacturing, assembly, maintenance and plant expansion to turnarounds. It also includes environmental technologies and digital applications.
In the Middle East and the UAE, we have two business segments: engineering and a larger operations and maintenance segment that performs industrial maintenance. We have been in the region for about 50 years, with 11 offices in eight countries.
One interesting fact is that we have about 70 per cent of the same customers now that we had 20 years ago. We have been working predominantly with the larger government companies within utilities, power and oil and gas. The Middle East is important to Bilfinger. From a portfolio perspective, being in the Middle East diversifies the risk and offers a different set of opportunities than Europe. Bilfinger is also able to offer competitive rates in the European market for engineering works performed in the Middle East.
The region is also important for our international and global clients. European and US key account customers are also present in the Middle East. Services performed in the Middle East are meeting the same high international standards.
Bilfinger has concepts and technologies that it is able to deploy in the Middle East and then apply back home or in Europe. Those can be maintenance concepts and digitalisation projects, from which it gains experience and lessons to further develop internationally.
Bilfinger is involved in all levels of the energy transition value chain. In the Middle East, we do engineering, water desalinisation, development of infrastructure and transport, as well as district cooling plants based on renewable/green energy sources. Sustainability is an important part of our overall strategy. We shall be net zero or carbon neutral by 2030. We are advanced in our measurement and reporting. We aim to bring energy and sustainability measures from Europe to the Middle East to help governments and businesses achieve zero-emission targets.
Bilfinger has relevant data and is well positioned to work with customers to develop and improve technology. We are helping customers with plant efficiency and maintenance.
We engineer for them, while working on emissions from the solutions plant. There are some conditions required to achieve zero emission.
One is avoidance, like avoid using high-emission fuels. It is about finding and applying alternative energy, which could be renewable. For Bilfinger, it is also about how we can generate sufficient renewable energy ourselves, for example by installing solar panels on our roofs.
The main priority and focus on the Bilfinger agenda would be to achieve carbon neutrality by 2030. There are still low-threshold initiatives available, such as single-use plastics and lights and temperature controls.
Overall, we are also gradually using more electric vehicles (EV) to reduce emissions. We need to work actively with the government to improve EV charging infrastructure and ease of using it.