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CCC Identifies the Digital Tech Megatrends to Construct a Future Virtual World

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CCC Identifies the Digital Tech Megatrends to Construct a Future Virtual World

ATHENS, Greece

• The leading global construction company highlights the megatrends to become reality by 2050 for sustainable urban living through the “Future of Construction Initiative”
• AR, 3D printing and even autonomous construction are emerging technologies to be adopted by the Infrastructure and Urban Development (IU) industry
• Savings up to $1.7 trillion globally within 10 years

Full-scale digitization of the construction industry – including 3D printing, AR and even autonomous construction – could save up to $1.7 trillion globally within 10 years, a new World Economic Forum report shows. The report, Shaping the Future of Construction: Future Scenarios and Implications, is the first ever to integrate consideration of new technologies and trends into three consistent scenarios for the future of the global engineering and construction industry.

Consolidated Contractors Company, a leading global construction company, worked closely with the World Economic Forum and Boston Consulting Group to serve on the initiative and contribute to the report, which comes as a result of a year-long collaboration with more than 30 leading companies in the engineering and construction industry.

The report highlights that new digital technologies, such as building information modelling (BIM), 3D printing, wireless sensors and autonomous equipment are disrupting a range of industries, including the Infrastructure and Urban Development (IU) industry, and that stakeholders can no longer afford to ignore these fundamental change

The Member of the Steering Committee for the Future of Construction Initiative, Consolidated Contractors Company Manager M.I.S. & Business Processes Re-engineering, ArefBoualwan, said that these digital technology megatrends were crucial for the industry to meet global needs in the future. “The three futuristic scenarios we identified in the report are extreme, but conceivable – they analyze how multiple current megatrends could establish different versions of a future world. The scenarios – ‘Building in a virtual world’, ‘Factories run the world’ and ‘A green reboot’ are not designed to predict the future – but to help us prepare for emerging trends”, Mr. Boualwan commented.

According to the CCC executive, there is little doubt that a realistic version of our future will include elements of all three scenarios identified in the report. “When it comes to technology specifically – the ‘building in a virtual world’ scenario sees an era where people are immersed in virtual reality in all aspects of life”.

In a global context, this scenario sees major advancements in robotics and artificial intelligence – automation, connected systems and cloud technology permeate daily life and industries of all kinds. “Elements of this scenario are considered very likely – we predict new businesses will emerge, software players will gain more power and more residential, recreational and passenger mobility assets will be required”, Mr. Boualwan stated.

“As a result – transformation imperatives are crucial for all parties in the construction industry, to help them adapt to new realities. We must capture new opportunities and adopt advanced technologies at scale – including initiatives like wireless equipment, cloud & real-time collaboration, 3D scanning/printing and augmented reality and visualization. We have seen digital technologies completely transform global industries in recent years – from social media to e-commerce and digital based mobility companies. But only very recently have digital technologies begun to emerge in the engineering and construction industry. This is the way of the future – and this report will help companies across the industry adequately prepare for it,” he continued.

The scope of the initiative is to prepare for a challenging but promising future, while securing and enhancing the wellbeing and happiness of society. The IU industry should, therefore, react quickly and with appropriate action to changing conditions and opportunities for new business to provide societies globally with sustainable, affordable assets that fulfil human needs.

More information about the Shaping the Future of Construction: Future Scenarios and Implications report is available at https://www.weforum.org/reports/future-scenarios-and-implications-for-the-industry, along with an animation video on YouTube: View – Shaping the Future of Construction.
More information about Consolidated Contractors Company is available at http://www.ccc.net

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Tänak wins easily in the Arctic as Rovanperä grabs early title lead

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Tänak wins easily in the Arctic as Rovanperä grabs early title lead 1

Finn becomes youngest ever WRC leader with Belgian Neuville back in third.

Ott Tänak sealed a dominant start-to-finish victory at Arctic Rally Finland Powered by CapitalBox on Sunday afternoon.

The Estonian was never seriously challenged during the three-day encounter in Lapland’s frozen forests. He built a comfortable lead during the first two legs and eased through the finale to win the FIA World Rally Championship’s second round by 17.5sec.

Home hero Kalle Rovanperä fended off a charging Thierry Neuville to claim the best result of his career in second. At just 20 years old, he became the youngest driver to lead the WRC in the championship’s 49-year history. Neuville finished 2.3sec adrift in third.

Tänak won five of the 10 snow and ice speed tests in his Hyundai i20. Apart from a brush with a snowbank on Saturday, he avoided trouble on superfast roads near Rovaniemi to kick-start his title bid after retiring from the season-opener in Monte-Carlo.

“The pressure was there and we knew it was going to be very complicated to take the fight,” he said. “In the end we did a very good weekend, with only one mistake. It’s an amazing place, definitely one of the best places to have a winter rally.”

Rovanperä, starting just his ninth top-level rally, began the final day with a 1.8sec buffer to Neuville. He extended it by a tenth in the first of two passes through the 22.47km Aittajärvi test, before winning the final Wolf Power Stage to retain his grip on second.

The Toyota Yaris driver moved four points clear of Neuville at the top of the standings, relegating world champion Sébastien Ogier who had a disappointing weekend. The Frenchman finished 20th after burying his Yaris into a snow drift.

Neuville’s third place provided a double podium for Hyundai Motorsport, which reduced Toyota Gazoo Racing’s manufacturers’ championship lead to 11 points.

Craig Breen finished fourth in another i20 after a four-rally absence. Tyre management was crucial and the Irishman fell back on Saturday as he struggled for grip on deteriorating roads after ending the opening day in second. He was 52.6sec adrift of Tänak.

Breen kept Elfyn Evans at bay in the final test after the Welshman closed to within 3.6sec in the penultimate stage. The final gap between them was 8.9sec. Japan’s Takamoto Katsuta rounded off the top six in another Yaris.

Tributes were made on the podium to Finnish rally great Hannu Mikkola. The 1983 world champion and three-time runner-up died on Friday and the Finnish Air Force led the accolades with an F18 Hornet flypast.

The WRC moves to the asphalt Croatia Rally for round three, which is based in Zagreb on April 22-25.

Final positions

1. O Tänak / M Järveoja EST Hyundai i20 2hr 03min 49.6sec

2. K Rovanperä / J Halttunen FIN Toyota Yaris +17.5sec

3. T Neuville / M Wydaeghe BEL Hyundai i20 +19.8sec

4. C Breen / P Nagle IRL Hyundai i20 +52.6sec

5. E Evans / S Martin GBR Toyota Yaris +1min 01.5sec

6. T Katsuta / D Barritt JAP Toyota Yaris +1min 37.8sec

FIA World Rally Championship (after round 2 of 12)

1. K Rovanperä 39pts

2. T Neuville 35

3. S Ogier 31

4. E Evans 31

5. O Tänak 27

 

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Euro zone factories buzzing in February as demand soars

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Euro zone factories buzzing in February as demand soars 2

By Jonathan Cable

LONDON (Reuters) – Euro zone factory activity raced along in February thanks to soaring demand, a survey showed on Monday, although the burst of business led to a shortage of raw materials and a spike in input costs.

Restrictions imposed across the continent to try to quell the spread of the coronavirus have shuttered vast swathes of the bloc’s dominant services industry, meaning it has fallen to manufacturers to support the economy.

IHS Markit’s final Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) jumped to a three-year high of 57.9 in February from January’s 54.8, ahead of the initial 57.7 “flash” estimate and one of the highest readings in the survey’s 20-year history.

An index measuring output, which feeds into a composite PMI due on Wednesday that is seen as a good guide to economic health, climbed to 57.6 from 54.6, well above the 50 mark separating growth from contraction.

“Manufacturing is appearing as an increasingly bright spot in the euro zone’s economy so far this year,” said Chris Williamson, chief business economist at IHS Markit.

“The solid manufacturing expansion is clearly helping to offset ongoing virus-related weakness in many consumer-facing sectors, alleviating the impact of recent lockdown measures in many countries and helping to limit the overall pace of economic contraction.”

A Reuters poll last month showed the bloc was in a double dip recession and that the economy would contract 0.8% this quarter after shrinking 6.9% in 2020 on an annual basis. [ECILT/EU]

Rocketing demand for manufactured goods pushed factories to increase staffing levels for the first time in nearly two years.

But lockdown measures disrupted supply chains and factories struggled to obtain raw materials, leading to a big increase in delivery times.

“The growth spurt has brought its own problems, however, with demand for inputs not yet being met by supply. Shipping delays and shortages of materials are being widely reported, and led to near-record supply chain delays,” Williamson said.

Those shortages allowed suppliers to hike their prices at the fastest rate in almost a decade. The input prices PMI bounced to 73.9 from 68.3.

(Reporting by Jonathan Cable; Editing by Hugh Lawson)

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Strong exports lift German factory activity to three-year high in February – PMI

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Strong exports lift German factory activity to three-year high in February - PMI 3

BERLIN (Reuters) – Higher demand from China, the United States and Europe drove growth in German factory activity to its highest level in more than three years in February, brightening the outlook for Europe’s largest economy, a survey showed on Monday.

IHS Markit’s Final Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) for manufacturing, which accounts for about a fifth of the economy, jumped to 60.7 from 57.1 in January.

It was the highest reading since January 2018 and came in slightly better than the initial “flash” figure of 60.6.

Factories have been humming along during the pandemic on higher foreign demand, helping the German economy avoid a contraction in the last quarter of 2020 and offsetting a drop in consumer spending amid a partial lockdown to contain COVID-19.

Many manufacturers reported higher demand from Asia, especially China, as well as the United States and European countries, with export sales posting their biggest increase since December 2017, the survey showed.

Phil Smith, Principal Economist at IHS Markit, said supply chain pressures intensified as more firms reported delays than ever before in nearly 25 years of data collection.

“There looks to be further upward pressure on inflation in the German economy from supply bottlenecks and a subsequent surge in manufacturing input costs,” Smith noted.

The survey suggested that supply disruption is making it more difficult to replenish stocks, which could complicate production in the coming months, he cautioned.

“Nevertheless, the overriding sentiment for the longer-term outlook is optimism, with a record number of manufacturers expecting to see output rise over the next 12 months.”

Still, economists expect the economy to shrink in the first quarter of this year due to a stricter lockdown, which has shut most shops and services since mid-December, and freezing temperatures that slowed construction activity in February.

(Reporting by Michael Nienaber; Editing by Hugh Lawson)

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