Komatsu aggressively pursuing business opportunities

With strong partnership with Galadari Brothers, the Japanese conglomerate sees more demand for heavy equipment in the UAE on investment in infrastructure, tourism and other industries

By Muzaffar Rizvi

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Tom Hoga, Managing Director, Komatsu Middle East FZE.
Tom Hoga, Managing Director, Komatsu Middle East FZE.

Published: Mon 11 Dec 2023, 12:28 PM

Komatsu Middle East has a very clear path of growth and aggressively pursuing business opportunities despite a challenging environment globally, says its top official.

Tom Hoga, Managing Director, Komatsu Middle East FZE, said the the UAE’s roadmap to 2031 emphasizes investments in tourism, infrastructure and other industries that will generate more demand for heavy equipment in the country.

“We will be actively involved in the development of the entire Middle East region,”he said during an interview.

Komatsu is one of the largest manufacturers of construction and mining equipment, utilities, forest machineries and industrial machinery globally. The company started its activity in Middle East in 1964 and setup its liaison office in Dubai in 1977, and then moved to Jebel Ali Free Zone in 1997. Later in 1999, Komatsu Middle East FZE was established in the Jebel Ali Free Zone.

Excerpts from the interview:

Please describe Komatsu operations in the UAE and its scope of business in the region.

Komatsu Middle East FZE is a part of Komatsu group, which is based in Tokyo Japan.

We offer parts supply, service support, training and demonstration for construction and mining products to Middle Eastern region.

Our regional headquarter was established in 2019 in the Jebel Ali Free Zone, along with a training and demonstration centre in Dubai. The UAE is one of Komatsu's most strategic market as we see the excellent governmental leadership and public sector's strong initiative to make the country even greater.

We are putting roots down in this area.

What is your business strategy for 2024?

Komatsu is aggressively pursuing opportunities worldwide. We all know the last few years has been a challenge globally. We’re now on a very clear path of growth.

We will be actively involved in the development of the entire Middle East region. Population will continue to rise in this region, bringing about more demand for infrastructure.

How do you see the outlook for the construction machinery industry?

The UAE is in a very unique position. The rising price of oil prices has given it more disposable income to invest in infrastructure.

The UAE’s great roadmap to 2031 emphasizes investments in tourism and other industries. That will bring about more demand for heavy equipment to support infrastructure for these industries.

COP28 presents another strong and unique initiative in the UAE. We believe the enhancements in renewable energy sources operation such as solar power and hydrogen, will also bring about additional value to the entire region.

Do you see any challenges for the industry?

We believe one of the challenges is the increasing technological diversity throughout the world.

On the other hand, we see this as an opportunity to create new needs, so we are investing in smart technologies for our construction equipment.

We already use ICT machines, KOMTRAX — a GPS telematics system, and Autonomous Haulage System (AHS) in our construction and mining equipment.

And we are also pursuing various ways to incorporate AI in our equipment.

How do you see growing ties between the UAE and Japan and how Komatsu would take advantage of it?

As you know, last year in 2022 Japan and the UAE celebrated the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations, and we believe that the ties between the two countries are very deep in terms of the history of the UAE's founding.

Komatsu and Galadari Tractors Heavy Equipment are proud to have contributed to the construction industry in the UAE over 40 years, and we believe that the trust we have earned from our customers through our past activities has helped us achieve our current position.

Can you please tell me more about your relationship with Galadari Trucks and if you have any important milestones to share?

Our partnership with Galadari Brothers started in 1977 and is now in its 46th year. Galadari Brothers, the most renowned brand name in UAE and excellent organisation with a number of talented people, is one of our most trusted distributors. We are proud of the solid and strong partnership which have been evolving by our mutual teamwork and look forward to our relationship growing even further.

Any major project in the recent future that you’d like to share?

We’re on track to achieve net zero targets. The goal is to have only 50 per cent of our 2010 carbon emissions by the year 2030.

We hope to achieve carbon neutrality by the year 2050. We will adopt a multi-prong approach in achieving carbon neutrality.

We’ll take into consideration the batteries, fuel cells, hybrid vehicle technology, and hydrogen and other biofuel.

— muzaffarrizvi@khaleejtimes.com


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