Korean builders received overseas construction orders worth US$32.1 billion (662 contracts) in 2018, according to the International Contractors Association of Korea on Dec. 30.
This year's total fell short of the records set in the early 2010s, but is meaningful in that it recorded double-digit growth of 10.7% in six years. The growth is attributable to the receipts of large-scale projects through joint ventures between Korean companies and the diversification of overseas construciton markets.
This year's order receipts broke through the US$30 billion milestone in three years, meaning that a downturn kindled by low oil prices over the past few years is turning into a steady growth period. This change is characterized by Korean contractors’ expansion of entries into high-value-added investment projects, including the winning of the Antispinsky Petrochemical Plant project (US$3 billion) from Russia, a new market.
By country, Korean builders landed orders of US$5,330 million which tripled from the previous year, from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) although they fully recovered orders from the Middle East. In addition, orders from Vietnam, Russia, Singapore, and Thailand increased significantly thanks to Korean government’s diplomatic policies such as a new southward policy and cooperation with northern countries.
Among them, Korean companies made a big improvement in Singapore such as landing orders to build five of the ten sections of the North-South Corridor project from the country.