Week in review: Back-up gensets at Dubai landmarks

The directive to install back-up power generators at landmark developments in Dubai will comprehensively benefit the emirate's building supply chain

Back-up power generators must be fitted at all landmark developments across Dubai. [Representational image]
Back-up power generators must be fitted at all landmark developments across Dubai. [Representational image]

The first week of May marked increased activity in Dubai's temporary power sector, and the upcoming months look set to get busier. 

Earlier this week, a committee was formed to follow up on the implementation of an order issued by Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, and Ruler of Dubai, HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

On 25 April, 2017, it was reported that the Ruler ordered that landmark sites in Dubai are fitted with back-up power generators by real estate developers and other relevant stakeholders.


HH Sheikh Mohammed’s announcement came a day after a power outage occurred at the city’s Dubai Mall.

According to a study released by 6Wresearch in September 2016, the UAE's diesel genset market is projected be worth $309.9m (AED1.2bn) by 2022, and the Ruler’s latest directive will likely further this sector's growth in Dubai.

This April, a study found that GCC governments are ‘investing billions’ in cultural tourism developments. Dubai alone has seen a 127% increase in visitor numbers to its most popular museums and galleries, which has led five of the emirate’s museums to attracting 1.75 million visitors in 2015. The launch of Museum of The Future in 2017 and Mohammed Bin Rashid Library in 2018 will likely boost these figures.

And that’s just museums – HH Sheikh Mohammed’s announcement covers all projects of touristic, commercial, and cultural value. On that basis, one could reasonably assume that the UAE’s genset providers can look forward to astounding growth in the years to come.

The country’s facilities management (FM) sector could also benefit from the new directive.

A circular issued by Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) on the topic reportedly states that the back-up generators' capacity should be “sufficient to cover lighting, elevators, escalators, automatic doors, surveillance cameras, alarm systems, and fire and safety equipment”. Within the remit of a typical hard FM contract, these back-up generators would not only impact planned preventive maintenance (PPM) and reactive maintenance schedules, but programmes for fire safety egress, elevator maintenance, and security as well.

In terms of the directive's implementation, cost and maintenance factors might be the immediate priorities of stakeholders involved in live projects. However, once these teething problems have been managed, the Dubai Ruler’s order will undoubtedly add value to the emirate’s built environment.

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