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Taiyo aims to take Made-in-UAE Landmarks to Libya

Search ASIA Travel Tips .com 11 July 2005

Libya’s plans to emerge from years in the tourism wilderness as a major travel destination could help one of the world’s largest membrane companies accelerate its Middle East business growth through a new UAE regional base.

Taiyo Membrane Corporation (TMC) has engineered distinctive roof and shade structures gracing airport buildings, sports stadiums and other major developments across the world and created instantly recognisable landmarks in cities across the Middle East.

Structures like Taiyo’s at Ibn Battuta are a familiar sight in the UAE
Structures like Taiyo’s at Ibn Battuta are a familiar sight in the UAE

Since setting up operations in Dubai last September, the company has made a number of additions to its regional portfolio, and Taiyo Membrane Corporation (Middle East) is now targeting Libya where huge investment is planned to create a modern tourism infrastructure.

An explosion of new cafés, restaurants, hotels and sports facilities are now in the pipeline following the lifting of economic sanctions. The country’s sole five-star hotel will be overshadowed by the arrival of 100,000 new beds by 2010, and Libya is ultimately planning to welcome ten million visitors per year compared with the current total of 100,000.

Taiyo will launch its bid to capitalise on this huge development by participating in the ‘UAE in Libya’ exhibition taking place from 27-30 November in Tripoli.

Organised by Dubai Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Jebel Ali Free Zone Authority and Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing, the exhibition will reinforce business links between the two countries.

“Libya could be extremely lucrative, especially for construction companies specialising in the leisure industry,” said Gunther De Graeve, general manager of Taiyo Membrane. “We’re launching our products there following the overwhelming success we’ve had in the Gulf where our designs have become landmarks of the region’s leisure and retail attractions.”

TMC is a division of Japan's Taiyo Kogyo Corporation. Its striking roof and shade designs cover spectators at venues like the Millennium Dome in United Kingdom and Denver International Airport in the United States. Dozens of projects have also been completed in South East Asia, China, Europe and Central America.

Prior to setting up its Dubai-based operation, The Taiyo Group had been active in the Middle East for more then 20 years through a network of agents and representatives. One of its earliest major projects in the region was the Haj Terminal in Mecca in 1984.

Its Middle East projects list now includes City Centre in Doha, King Fahd International Stadium in Riyadh, Marina Mall in Abu Dhabi, Saida Stadium in Lebanon, Scientific Centre in Kuwait and the Ibn Battuta Mall in Dubai.

“The Ibn Battuta structure covers the car parking spaces and pedestrian walkways, which is particularly beneficial in 45C,” said De Graeve. “We hope this will appeal to contractors in North Africa where temperatures climb pretty high in the summer.”

The company is currently completing a project for Dubai Municipality to cover the 10,000 square metres atrium area of Zayed University. The membrane structure will bathe the atrium in natural light during the day and at night, with the use of internal lighting, transform the roof into another landmark on the Dubai skyline.

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