This feature is part of a series highlighting the most prominent engineering and design consultancy firms with headquarters in Jordan or that have a significant 00M-651 presence in the Kingdom.
CEO: Tarek Zuriekat
Number of employees: Approximately 450
Offices: Jordan, Qatar, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, and the United States
Founded back in 1988 by Marwan Zurieqat, Engicon has become renowned in Jordan and increasingly in the region for its environmentally conscious designs. Whether it’s designing big infrastructure projects like water pipelines and highways, or dreaming up ideas for green buildings, Engicon CEO Tarek Zuriekat says his company has developed a reputation for adopting an innovative approach to engineering.
What defines Engicon and the projects that you work on?
I think what sets us apart is our willingness and ability to innovate. If you look at the water sector, we’ve been involved in many new and innovative schemes. For example, this year we signed an agreement with the Ministry of Water and Irrigation to invest E20-097 in rehabilitating a pumping station in Madaba, where we will get paid purely on the energy reductions we achieve.
Of the projects you are currently working on, are most of them in Jordan or in the wider region?
Right now, we’re working on about 45 different projects. We’re quite excited this year, because we’ve established a permanent base in Saudi Arabia where we have about four ongoing projects. Our branch in Baghdad is now also up and running. I think what’s exciting about this year is that, for the first time, we’re doing more business outside of Jordan than we are in Jordan. Historically, we were quite dependent on the Jordanian market. Having this geographic diversification makes us stronger and more immune to shocks, and there have been quite a few shocks in the region in the last few years.
Engicon is known for its environmental focus. Is this something that applies to all of your projects and why has the company decided to specialize in this area?
We have a separate division that does environmental assessments and provides environmental services, but we see that everything we do revolves around protecting the environment, whether it’s in our water engineering department or our green building designs. At the end of the day, it very much depends on what the client wants, but we constantly strive to keep the environment central in the work we do.
Having an environmental focus is of strategic importance to the country. Jordan’s main challenges are in water and energy, and those two are quite related. Water pumping, for example, takes up 15 percent of the energy consumption in the Kingdom. We want to be active players in solving Jordan’s energy and environmental challenges. We’re quite proud of designing and supervising the construction of the World Health Organization office, which is the first building to win a gold LEED [green building leadership] Certificate.
How has the regional turmoil, especially the situation in Iraq, affected your projects there?
Surprisingly, our business has remained quite immune to political turmoil, not only in Iraq, but also in places like Yemen. Iraq and Yemen have proven to be, so far at least, good places to do business. Still, though, we keep a close eye on developments in the region. We were working in Libya until recently, but our projects have since been put on hold. In this region, you have to take the risk and always take the necessary precautions.
How was the industry, and Engicon in particular, affected by the economic downturn back in 2008?
Although the overall demand for construction dropped during the crisis, we managed to weather the storm because we’re quite diversified. We didn’t experience any growth during the crisis as the number of proposals and the level of work decreased, but, at the same time, we didn’t contract in size. Today, after 2013, we’re back to year-on-year growth.
Jerash and Hofa Transmission Pipelines – Jordan
Jordan Highway Master Plan – Jordan
World Health Organization Regional Office Building – Jordan
Early Disposition Development Projects of the Dead Sea Development Zone –Jordan
Transmission pipeline from Um Lulu to Jerash – Jordan
Hydraulic analysis of the water transport system in the Governorates of Ajloun and Jerash – Jordan
Water Transmission Pipeline from King Talal Dam to Northern Ghors – Jordan
Design and Quantity Surveying Services for AlKhor Sewerage Areas – Qatar
The National University of The Gambia Studies and Engineering Consultancy Services – Gambia
Construction Supervision for Water Supply System in Al Batina – Oman
Infrastructure Design and Construction Supervision for Al Rayyan Hills Project – Yemen
Articles in the series of the engineering and design firms shaping Jordan: