Truly understanding a project’s individual challenges requires an understanding of the regional particularities, needs and building methods of the customer’s country. For this reason Doka established over 160 sales and logistics sites in more than 70 countries around the world.
This way their customers can always be certain of receiving quick and full support for their projects for anything; from a simple residential building, a football stadium, a bridge to the world’s tallest tower, name them. This is their global strength on which Doka customers can rely on locally.
Construction Review had an interview with Harald Beutel, Doka’s Head of Sales Export Africa and this is what he had to say about formwork and scaffolding in Africa.
How is the scaffolding and formwork market in Africa?
The formwork and scaffolding market in Africa is very competitive, as well as price sensitive. It is generally felt that the market still opts for low cost, instead of quality, however with increasingly sophisticated projects being drawn up, and an increased awareness of site safety, this will likely change in the near future.
Typically, European style formwork and scaffolding is more commonly used in Northern and Southern Africa, whereas Sub-Saharan conactors tend not to invest in formwork for long-term use, instead opting for cheaper, but locally sourced material such as bamboo and wood. As mentioned, with an increase in sophisticated infrastructure projects being built across the continent, formwork is becoming a more sought-after product in the market.
Are there any new technologies in the African Market at the moment?
The demand for quality is steadily rising across the continent, and in line with the ongoing demand for housing units, more governments are committing to creating large-scale housing projects, a recent example being the 800,000 units planned by the Moroccan government, as announced at the Al Omrane Expo 2017.
Large-scale housing projects require high performing, easy-to-use systems, which can be easily managed by local manpower, ideally without the use of cranes. Monolithic concrete construction is the ideal solution to meet the high demand of housing, and Doka’s OneGo system allows for a ‘one go’ pouring solution. These lightweight aluminium panels deliver a greater efficiency on site.
Other formwork technologies are also in high demand in the African market, especially for high-rise buildings and bridge pylons, which require automatic climbing systems. Doka has supported projects including the Bouregreg Bridge in Morocco with its SKE 100 automatic climbing formwork, as well as several projects across Algeria, Nigeria and South Africa.
Timber beams such as Doka’s H20 beam; quality floor props and economical plywood ensure a more sustainable and long-term cost effective approach for the environment.
How is the reception of these technologies?
Construction professionals understand the advantages of new technologies quite quickly, particularly as they are often designed to save time and money. Typically, the only motivation to move ahead with traditional systems comes down to budget.
Formwork budgets are usually not considered when planning for a project and a mind shift will be required in order to be more sustainable, while considering the long-term benefits of using superior technology and products
What can you comment on the installation of scaffolding and formwork?
As already mentioned above, formwork and scaffolding systems are much easier to assemble and safer to use than traditional formwork. Other benefits include a better quality of concrete finish and significant timesaving’s when it comes to installation and stripping. Dokaflex for slabs and Frami for walls are the most suitable systems for the African markets as they are flexible, easy to handle and very economical.