Hanwha E&C to build world’s largest domed arena near Manila

  • Published : Aug 18, 2011 - 19:29
  • Updated : Aug 18, 2011 - 19:29

Korean builder strives to become one of the world’s 100 largest construction firms

Hanwha Engineering and Construction Corp. began work on the world’s largest domed arena in the Philippines on Thursday.

The work for the $175 million contract, signed on Aug. 4, got underway in a ceremony attended by Hanwha E&C officials including vice chairman Kim Hyun-chung and those from the Filipino Christian organization Iglesia Ni Cristo that issued the contract.
Hanwha E&C vice chairman Kim Hyun-chung (right) and chief of Iglesia Ni Cristo Eduardo Manalo shake hands after the groundbreaking ceremony near Manila on Wednesday. (Hanwha E&C)

The facility located near Manila, named the Philippine Arena, will be fitted with 50,000 seats and its domed roof will be nearly 36,000 square meters, making it the world’s largest domed arena, the company said.

Hanwha E&C said that the work will be carried out over 30 months to be finished early 2014.

“By winning this contract for building the world’s largest dome arena, the company was able to prove its technological capabilities and the ability to carry out overseas projects,” Kim said in a statement. The company said that in the biddings for the contract, it competed with China’s Jiangsu International and the Philippines’ largest construction company EEI Corp. The project will be conducted in design-build process in which the contractor is responsible for all related processes from designing to building the facility, the company said.

“As the bridgehead for the Southeast Asian market, the project is expected to bring opportunities for more civil engineering and construction projects in the region.”

The project opens a new market for Hanwha E&C, which has focused mostly on the Middle Eastern markets, as it drives to become one of the world’s 100 largest construction companies.

Earlier this year Hanwha Engineering and Construction announced plans to become one of the world’s top 100 builders by 2015 with an annual sales figure of 5 trillion won ($4.65 billion), and win contracts worth 7 trillion won in that year.

The plans also revealed that the company will diversify its overseas portfolio to include civil engineering projects, and to expand into solar power and other renewable energy businesses.

Also as part of the plans, the company hopes to expand its overseas generated income by more than 20 percent each year with the aim of raising 40 percent of its annual revenues from overseas sources by 2015.

In the Middle East, Hanwha E&C has made significant headway this year, winning a series of contracts including an urban development project in Iraq.

The contract, issued by Iraq’s National Investment Commission, is valued at $7.25 billion, making it the largest overseas construction project to be won by a Korean construction firm.

Under the contract, Hanwha Engineering and Construction will build a planned town at a location 25 kilometers east of central Baghdad. The town will be built over an area of 1,830 hectares and contain 100,000 new homes, the company said.

By Choi He-suk (