The development of Port Hastings drew industry leaders to last week’s Major Projects Conference in Melbourne


27th November 2013, Melbourne, Australia: Last week key stakeholders gathered at the Melbourne Convention Centre to discuss major projects occurring in Victoria. The state of Victoria is forecast to see expediential growth over the next 30 years with the population expected to increase by 3 million. Victoria is at a critical point where major infrastructure development needs to happen and smart planning must occur to ensure that Victoria is prepared for the population increase.

Over two days the Conference attracted 180 Directors, Project Managers and Consultants from construction organisations including representatives from government. Day one of the Conference began with an address from the Hon. Terry Mulder, Minister for Public Transport and Roads Victoria. The Minister addressed the four major transport projects that the government is in the process of delivering; the Regional Rail Link, the East West Link, Metro Link and the Development of Port Hastings. The Minister also highlighted that Victoria is in a great position as it remains the only state in Australia that is rated AAA by both rating agencies and which equates to lower borrowing costs compared to other states in Australia.

Delegates gained further insight into the Regional Rail Link with a presentation from Corey Hannett, CEO, Regional Rail Link Authority. While the Regional Rail Link will service regional residents it also provides enhanced stations and more efficient train services for the outer suburbs or Melbourne including Footscray and Sunshine. With the majority of major construction nearly completed. In the next 12 months we will see completion of many bridges, opening of new platforms at Southern Cross Station, extensive track works laid and the completion of 34 new waterway crossings / drainage structures.

On day two participants heard from Mike Lean, CEO, Port Hastings Development Authority this presentation captured the audience’s attention with participants keen to know more about the development. The plan for Port Hastings is to complete scoping for the project by 2014; from 2014 – 2017 the Authority plans to complete impact assessments and environmental approvals and put forward a business case. Contracts are anticipated to be awarded from 2017 and work on the port is scheduled to finish by 2025, making Port Hastings Melbourne’s next container port.

Participants shared their experiences – Adam Schutz, BDM, A2K Technologies stated the event was well organised by a team that was welcoming, helpful and a pleasure to deal with. Cam Arullanantham, Senior Project Manager, Frankston City Council commented that all the presentations were good and that he especially enjoyed the presentation “Infrastructure and Resource Project Opportunities” from Derek Lark, National Executive Director, Industry Capability Network.

Key industry suppliers at Conference included Projectlink, Aggreko, Thorn Lighting, Casey Cardinia Region, Parchem, A2K Technologies and more. The Conference also hosted other vital speakers which included: Cr Nora Lamont, Former Lord Mayor, Maroondah City Council, Dave Jones, Manager Roads & Traffic, RACV, Trevor Boyd, Director M80 Ring Road Upgrade Project, VicRoads and Claire Johnston, Project Director, Lend Lease Development Melbourne.

13 – 14 October 2014 marks the 6th Annual Victorian Major Projects Conference, more details about this year’s event and updates for next year’s Conference can be found at


Minister of Energy & Industry attends Solar Qatar Summit in Doha


The Minister of Energy and Industry H E Dr Mohammed bin Saleh Al Sada, the President of Qatar General Electricity & Water Corporation (Kahramaa), Engineer Essa bin Hilal Al  Kuwari, and senior officials attended the second day of the summit. Al Sada and Al Kuwari met exhibitors and organisers.

The Minister was briefed on Kahramaa’s renewable energy projects and the recent trends in solar energy sector across the world.

Al Kuwari said, “Kahramaa’s goal is to make renewable energy competitive and profitable; therefore, we are interested in the deployment of renewable energy, energy efficiency and low-pollution technologies.”

He thanked the organisers of the summit and welcomed stakeholders, professionals, delegates and exhibitors at the event.

The first day of the summit featured Kahramaa’s presentation entitled ‘Kahramaa towards Creative Methods to Exploit Renewable Energy Sources’ by Saleh Al Marri, Head of Renewable Energies Technologies.

He spoke in details about ongoing projects in Qatar and answered queries pertaining to Kahramaa’s solar energy initiatives.

Source : The Peninsula

Sydney’s $1.8 billion Light Rail Project drew industry leaders to the Major Projects Conference in Sydney


Key stakeholders gathered in Sydney on the 6 – 7 November 2013 for the 4th Annual New South Wales Major Projects Conference. Participants gathered to about the latest major project updates currently underway in the State of New South Wales. New South Wales has experienced a real slump in terms of new infrastructure developments; now New South Wales is back on track and real infrastructure development is happening in the State. Participants heard about the major projects which will help ease congestion; projects included Sydney’s Light Rail and the North West Rail Link.

The two day conference attracted 250 key industry players within the Construction and Infrastructure sectors.  Ross Cameron, Chairman, Aspire Sydney Consortium was a standout speaker on day two. He enlived the debate by highlighting the issues New South Wales have been facing and detailed his view on what he believed to be the solution to the problem. This presentation created a real buzz and opened dialogue between participants.

The North West Rail Link was a key project which everyone was keen to hear more about; Tom Gellibrand, Deputy Project Director, North West Rail Link presented on the status of the project. This project is the biggest public transport infrastructure development in Sydney, since the Harbour Bridge was built almost 90 years ago. Tom Gellibrand quoted that the project will require “20,000 more tonnes of steel than the Sydney Harbour Bridge”. Once the North West Rail Link is in operation, the trains that will run through the newly created tunnels, will be Australia’s first fully-automated rail system. This much anticipated project will see trains open to commuters in 2019.

Jeff Goodling, Light Rail, Project Manager, Transport NSW discussed Sydney’s Light Rail Project. With an estimated cost of $1.6 billion, this project plans to build a new light rail track that will run across a 12 km route, from Circular Quay to Randwick and Kingsford. Sydney’s CBD will see George Street between Bathurst and Hunter turn into a 1km wire free Pedestrian Zone. This project will also create a 5.6km extension from Lilyfield to Dulwich Hill which is due to open in 2014. This project plans to free up bus congestion by offering a much needed alternative for these populated suburbs.

Participants shared their experiences – Rick Duynhoven, Assistant Director, Sydney TAFE stated that the Conference offered a great look into future infrastructure projects and he appreciated the look into regional areas and their connection to Sydney. Steve Black, Trading Manager, Sims Metal Management commented that the Conference covered a board range of topics and he thought the content and relevance to the agenda was great. He also mentioned that the open panel discussion forum worked really well.

Key industry suppliers at Conference included Projectlink, Aggreko, Milwaukee, ACO Polycrete, CSR Hebel, Parchem, Sika Australia and many more. The Conference also hosted other vital speakers which included: Michael Kilgariff, CEO, Australian Logistics Council, Shelley Roberts, Executive Director Aviation Services, Sydney Airport, John Connor, CEO, Climate Institute, David McCracken, Advisor, Master Planning and Strategic Development, Barangaroo Delivery Authority and many more.

The 18 – 19 November 2014, will mark the 5th Annual New South Wales Major Projects Conference. For further information regarding this year’s event and updates for next year’s conference please visit

Developments and insight into Major Projects in the Northern Territory drew key stakeholders to Major Projects Conference in Darwin




Key stakeholders and suppliers from the resource and construction industry gathered on 29 – 30October 2013. This meeting of the minds at the Darwin Convention Centre has been taking place consecutively for the past 4 years. Currently the Northern Territory economy is growing due to major projects currently underway in the Northern Territory; 2012-13 saw the highest recorded Construction growth margin, increased by 83.4% it accounted for 70% of the total value of the Territory construction activity; primarily due to Ichthys project.

Tony Mott, Director – Investment Services Office of Asian Engagement, Trade and Investment, Department of the Chief Minister opened discussions that set the tone for day one; discussing global investment trends and how Darwin can benefit from Asia in the future. He also discussed tools and strategies required to capitalise on the opportunities that present themselves in the Territory for future growth and development.

Dr. Tom Rayner, Research Leader, Northern Research Futures Collaborative Research Network followed with an interesting prospective into climate change and the future of major projects. This thought provoking presentation had delegates thinking about managing labour costs when ‘very hot days’ increase, the importance of adaptive management, being open to innovation as well as new data management.


David Gwyther, Deputy General Manager Darwin, INPEX provided insight into Ichthys LNG Project progression. David highlighted that the workers village is now completed and the project is well and truly underway – promoting local Industry participation through a plan with the NT Government. Paul Taplin, Director, Utilibiz Pty Ltd followed speaking about the risks in contracts, tools for minimising risk through stakeholder analysis, early construct-ability and the need to keep consultants “on the hook”. 

Rob Bell, Managing Director, Western Australian Resources Limited discussed Project Sea Dragon which is a large scale Aquaculture project. The plan is to change the landscape of protein production by acquiring 10,000 – 15,000 ha of land in the Northern Territory; this area would house the production site for the project. This site would produce large quantities of prawns with the plan to export them to Asia. The proposed project comes at a time where the need for agri-food is increasing and Australia has the perfect landscape necessary to begin this development. 

Discussions about plans for developing the Top End led to the question of the day ‘Could the Northern Territory become the food bowl for Asia?’ During the panel discussion, panellists discussed development plans for the Top End which included discussions about how the Northern Territory could become the food bowl for Asia as well as the importance of current projects happening in the Territory.

Following the Panel Discussion, Lorraine Corowa, Director Ord Development Unit, from the Department of Primary Industry and Fisheries posed the big question; how to fund this agricultural development? Can Australia capitalise in this market and compete with the Asian markets? The answer, it seems is not simple and opinions were varied.

The Hon. Peter Styles began his presentation speaking about Ichthys LNG Project and the importance of supplying Liquefied Natural Gas to Japan as Japan is reducing its Nuclear power uses. The Minister also discussed how Darwin’s port is growing and he believes that LNG can be developed beyond the Ichthys LNG Project. He concluded that foreign investment and critical infrastructure development is essential for the Territory’s future.

The Hon. Peter Chandler addressed lack of land releases and how this has been affecting people living in the Territory. In reply the NT Government has a Real Housing for Growth Plan where they will build 2,000 affordable homes and aim to reduce the renting burden by facilitating home ownership. These affordable houses will help the people in the middle that earn an average income, that are not entitled to live in government housing yet struggle to rent normally.

Brigadier Darren Naumann, Director-General, Infrastructure Asset Development, Department of Defence discussed the defence estate. With a balance sheet value of $20.8 billion, they spend $1 billion on capital facilities, $180 million on leases and over $450 million on estate maintenance. The infrastructure division is currently working on strategic planning, developing in a smart and sustainable way, as well as managing community related issues.

Terry O’Connor, Chief Executive Officer, Darwin Port Corporation spoke about Darwin’s Port. Darwin’s port does not compare with ports in Queensland or Western Australia as it has been created to support the miners. This port operates 24/7; the Darwin Port has been created with the latest technology and high quality systems. Terry O’Connor’s message was clear, come to Darwin as an alternative to Gladstone or Townsville to avoid the waiting time and get your goods transported from Darwin if necessary.

Ian Kew, CEO, Northern Territory Airport spoke about the $70 million terminal expansion that the airport is currently undergoing. This will see the airport as a two storey, modern, integrated terminal with 100% Checked Baggage Screening (Domestic and International). Darwin’s Airport has already seen major growths as Jetstar used to be the only international airline departing from Darwin. Now Darwin Airport welcomes AirAsia, Philippine Airlines and Malaysia Airlines.

The Conference concluded with presentations from John Di Maria, Acting Executive Director Operations, NT Tourism and Kirsty McInnes, Managing Director, UNO Management Services. John Di Maria spoke about the importance of tourism to the Northern Territory economy; NT Tourisms’ goal is to ‘grow the visitor economy in the Northern Territory to $2.2 billion by 2020’. He also spoke about their new marketing approach with their new TVC that is currently airing across Australia.

The Conference was a huge success providing insight into the Major Projects taking place in the Territory. It created a much needed forum for stakeholders to learn, network and participate in discussions. With support from the Northern Territory Government and over 35 sponsors, the conference was well received; ‘well organised’, ‘excellent opportunity’, ‘very professional presentations’ and ‘fantastic set up’. Expotrade Australia will host the 5th Annual NT Major Projects Conference next year on the 22– 23 October 2014.


Managing all elements of construction risk – best practices


Risk and construction go hand in hand, the types of risk that are associated with construction span across finance, project delivery, insurance and on site risks. Each construction project carries its own set of risk, mitigating the risks is the real challenge. Organisations can have strong risk management processes and vigilant staff; however the element of risk still lies dormant.

As the elements of risk in construction are so high there is constantly new ways to mitigate risk including new technologies that have been developed. The 2013 Global Construction Survey conducted by KPMG has shown that only 41% respondents are happy with their risk management processes yet 77% of respondents believe their projects are underperforming. Projects that are underperforming lead to the occurrence of risk; the typical causes of underperforming projects are project delays, poor estimating, failed risk management processes, poor subcontractor performance and design errors.

The Construction Risk Management Summit looks into the keys areas of managing construction risk from conception to hand-over. It also looks at identifying potential project show stoppers, industry risks, best practices in construction risk management and project risk analysis. This Summit looks at all elements of risk including contractual risk, project risk, financial risk and onsite risk. Other elements of risk that pose a threat to construction is contamination; the proposed East West Link in Melbourne has recently been reported to have asbestos in Royal Park including contaminated water from Gasworks on a site in Fitzroy, which has the potential to enter the tunnel during construction.

Construction risk management isn’t easy as risks are variable and often external influences contribute to the risk factor. This Summit aims to provide ‘a meeting of minds’ that will encourage participation from key stakeholders to discuss risk management best practices as well as risk management problems/issues. Within a construction organisation everyone needs to be active when it comes to risk management. Each level of the organisation needs to be actively involved in ensuring risk management processes are met. It also means that safety needs to be the number one priority. Construction sites are still faced with fatal accidents and risk is on the forefront of every project.

The Summit will bring together key industry experts discussing construction risk management. Some of the top speakers include Paul Lawson, Head of Commercial Risk, Lend Lease Construction & Infrastructure, Bronwyn Friday, Group General Manager, Enterprise Risk Management, John Holland, Jane McTaggart, Technical Director, Transport, Aurecon and Grant Whitehorn, CEO, Risk Management Institute of Australasia.

More information on the Construction Risk Management Summit 2014 can be found at

Abu Dhabi to issue completely new sustainable lighting strategies in 2014

6th Nov 2013, Abu Dhabi, UAE: Next year will see the issue of completely revised and updated DMA lighting specifications in line with international best practice and the moving technology marketplace, which incudes new standards for solar street lighting and light pollution. In addition, a new expansive Abu Dhabi Sustainable Public Realm Lighting Handbook will be published to provide in-depth guidance on all aspects of lighting design and installation

Martin Valentine, Lighting Expert at Abu Dhabi City Municipality will preview the future sustainable lighting strategies at the Middle East Smart Lighting Summit on 11 & 12 November at Jumeirah at Etihad Towers in Abu Dhabi which will be inaugurated by Eng. Eisa Mubarak Ali Al Mazrouie, Executive Director of Abu Dhabi City’s Municipal Infrastructure and Assets Sector. The Abu Dhabi Sustainable Public Lighting Strategy which is now being implemented aims to contribute to at a least 60 per cent reduction in power usage, 75 per cent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions and a reduction in maintenance works by 40-80 per cent in the future.

Attracting over 300 of the region’s senior lighting designers and architects, government authorities and regulators, engineers, planners, developers and sustainability consultants the Summit will see presentations from key influencers in the lighting industry including Mohammad Ahmad Al Mulla, Director of Metrology at the Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology, Salem Al Qassimi and Dr. Simon Miller of the Abu Dhabi Quality and Conformity, Ed Ebrahimian, Director of Los Angeles City Street Lighting Bureau, and world-renowned lighting designer Mark Major of Speirs + Major.

The Summit will also introduce the newly established Middle East Lighting Association that will provide support to regulatory authorities and lighting manufacturers.

A large focus on this years’ event will be on new and future lighting technology including LED, solar and smart controls with Diamond Sponsor, TOYODA LLC showcasing innovative solutions from Japan that have been customized to suit the standards of the UAE market. Other major sponsors of the event include Platinum Sponsor GE Lighting, Gold Sponsors Philips, Ruud Lighting Arabia, Lug Lighting Factory, Lutron and Silver Sponsors Osram, Neptun Light, Martin Professional and Dalmatic. An exhibitor lounge at the event will showcase lighting products from both local and international manufacturers.

“It’s a very important platform for the Middle East’s lighting industry with government authorities, developers, consultants and manufacturers meeting to discuss standards and regulations and the development of emerging technology like solar to meet the sustainability requirements of key importance in this region”, says Charlene Corrin of Expotrade Global, the organizer of the Middle East Smart Lighting & Energy Summit.

Expotrade Global delivers some of the largest, most successful B2B industry conferences and events in the infrastructure, banking & finance, sustainability, lighting & energy, landscaping and construction sectors.

For more information, visit