With a steel processing capacity of 1.5 million tons, the company ranks among the top steel producers
The UAE is known for its rapid economic growth and diversification beyond oil and gas. One sector that has played a pivotal role in this transformation is the manufacturing industry. At the forefront of this sector stands Conares, a company that has become synonymous with quality, innovation, and sustainable practices. Carving a niche for itself in both domestic and international markets, the company now ranks amongst the top two steel producers across the nation.
One of the key factors that have contributed to Conares’ success is its strategic location within Jafza. Bharat Bhatia, Chairman and CEO of the company, in his interview with The Zone, emphasised how the advantages provided by the free zone have been instrumental in their progress over the years.
Investments for growth
Conares’ journey of success has been paved with substantial investments in its manufacturing capabilities. The company’s commitment to continuous improvement and expansion is evident in its investments of up to half a billion dollars in the region. These investments have not only enhanced Conares’ existing capacity but have also allowed the company to explore backward integration. Its latest project, with an investment of USD 200 million, focuses on producing its own raw materials, a significant step toward self-sufficiency and cost-efficiency.
Diverse product portfolio
Boasting a diverse product portfolio, Conares caters to various industry needs. With a processing capacity of 1.5 million tons of steel, the company specialises in wire rods, rebars, electric resistance welded (ERW) pipes and tubes. Its investment of around USD 300 million in a rebar rolling mill highlights its commitment to meeting the unique requirements of its domestic and international customers.
The addition of a colour-coated steel plant, with an investment of approximately USD 40 million, further demonstrates Conares’ focus on innovation and meeting niche market demands. This plant, equipped with state-of-the-art technology from CMI in Belgium, emphasises the company’s dedication to providing high-quality products with a remarkable 25-year warranty.
Embracing cutting-edge technology
In the steel industry, embracing advanced technology is crucial to staying competitive. Conares understands this principle well and has consistently invested in top solutions for its manufacturing processes. From Siemens and CMI in Europe to Kusakabe technology from Japan, Conares has sought the best in the industry to ensure product quality and efficiency.
The steel industry is often criticised for its environmental impact, especially regarding water consumption. However, Conares is dedicated to changing this narrative. Despite the water-intensive nature of steel production, the company has made a conscious effort to achieve zero water discharge, and efficiently reuse water to align their operations with green initiatives.
Conares has been recognised with several certificates from various authorities worldwide for their sustainable and environment-friendly efforts. Their vision includes becoming a “green steel producer,” which would be a significant milestone in the industry.
Capitalising on the advantages of Jafza’s multimodal connectivity, Conares has successfully optimised its supply chain to serve its customers efficiently. The free zone’s proximity to Jebel Ali Port, Al Maktoum International Airport, and national highways has allowed Conares to effectively export its products to 26 countries in six continents, making it a global player in the steel industry.
“Over 85 per cent of our finished goods are exported via sea. Regarding air transport, we benefit from the fact that within a seven-hour flight, we have access to a population of 7 billion people. This allows us to establish direct connections to various countries and cities. Furthermore, the road infrastructure in the region is exceptional. Whether we need to transport goods to Saudi Arabia, Oman, Kuwait, Bahrain, or elsewhere, road transport plays a pivotal role in ensuring timely and trouble-free deliveries,” said Bhatia.
A call to investors
Conares’ success story is a testament to its dedication to excellence, commitment to sustainability, and strategic investments. For investors looking to establish a foothold in the UAE, the company’s experience with Jafza stands as a powerful example.
The UAE’s visionary leadership, coupled with initiatives like Operation 300bn and the CEPA agreement with India, presents a wealth of opportunities. The free zone’s world-class infrastructure and support for businesses of all sizes offers an ideal platform for companies seeking to make their mark in the region.