As Australia approaches peak construction industry demand in the next three years, our infrastructure community leaders have been increasingly focused on addressing the capacity shortfall within Australia to deliver the $200 billion pipeline of transport projects, in addition to mitigating climate change, and keeping pace with exponential technological advances.

South Korean mega-construction firm, GS Engineering and Construction (GS E&C), knows from experience that Australia’s upcoming challenge is the opportunity of a lifetime, and has strategically decided to enter the Australian market, bringing its world-leading engineering skill to support the country’s burgeoning infrastructure rollout.

Ranked one of the top 100 infrastructure contractors globally, GS E&C is one of the South Korean mega-companies that over the last fifty years has famously recreated the Republic’s infrastructure into one of the world’s most innovative and efficient. 

This included a key role in the rapid development of Seoul’s iconic metro system, slashing commuter times in the city by 25 per cent over twenty years, despite significant growth in user numbers and length of commute.

“We were attracted to Australia because we can see similarities between the huge pipeline of mega-infrastructure projects coming online and the massive challenges Korea faced in finding skills, capital and engineering talent to rapidly regenerate its metro and other transport systems,” said Dongjin Kim, Managing Director of GS Engineering & Construction Australia Pty Ltd.

“We know we have a lot to offer in Australia’s grand regenerative infrastructure ambitions.”

The Australian Trade and Investment Commission – Austrade – agrees, recently updating its advice to encourage Australian firms to partner with major Korean firms, and naming GS E&C as one of the companies with the complementary skills and capital to allow consortiums to bid for work they might otherwise lack the skills or capital capacity for.

GS E&C entered the Australian market in 2016 on the strength of its background in digitised engineering and international best practice, seeking to support Australia’s high-stakes growth challenge. 

The company embraces Korea’s world-leading innovation credentials (they have been named the most innovative country in the world for seven of the past eight years on Bloomberg’s Innovative Index and were ranked fifth in the competitive 2021 Global Innovation Index) and aims to cede that knowledge into the local firms they partner with.

“We researched the best places worldwide to collaborate and become part of the challenges for the next century and we were impressed with Australia’s institutions and culture and practice of fairness,” Mr Kim said.

“There was a lot of alignment between our home culture of South Korea and Australia, and we can see ways in which we can serve the Australian people well and build a business here that contributes to Australia’s long-term effectiveness and wellbeing as a nation.

“In Korea and Singapore, especially, we have had success introducing sophisticated construction methodologies and finding new purposes for emerging technologies, such as robotics and Internet of Things sensors to make our sites safer and more efficient. 

“We believe that improvements in the planning and construction stage of nation-building projects can have exponential benefits to all involved.”  

Some of the key strategic abilities GS E&C brings to the table is world leading engineering expertise across specialisations including tunnelling, work in populous and mountainous areas, safety, as well as renewable energies such as solar energy capture and storage. 

One of its most recent projects, the Incheon Airport line, is the second unmanned magnetic levitation (‘maglev’) train line in the world.

GS E&C also has environmental and governance credentials aligned with Australia’s: the company received an ‘A’ rating for its environmental, social and governance (ESG) efforts from the Korea Corporate Governance Service last year and has been listed on the benchmark Dow Jones Sustainability Asia/Pacific Index for ten consecutive years. 

“We admire the way the Australian people – through its governments – have set up an ambitious and worthwhile infrastructure pipeline,” Mr Kim said. 

“This will be a once-in-a-lifetime chance to build the infrastructure itself as well as the skills and technology that will place Australia well within the Asian marketplace, and indeed the world’s.”

This sponsored editorial is brought to you by GS Engineering and ConstructionFor more information, visit gsenc.com.au/.

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