Concrete maker Al Kathiri Holding based in Saudi Arabia has announced that its 3D printing factory is now almost complete and is on track to start production in the second quarter of 2021.

With an estimated cost of 10.15 million Saudi riyals ($2.7 million), the Alian Industry Factory in Sudair City is expected to produce reinforced polystyrene sheets and was previously scheduled to complete in the third quarter of 2020.

However, work on the project has encountered delays due to the coronavirus pandemic. So far, construction work on the facility is 90 percent complete, Al Kathiri told the Saudi Stock Exchange (Tadawul) on Monday.

The company had earlier announced it would use Italian construction technology at its facility. Last year, it entered into an agreement with Italian firm Emmedue for the acquisition of technology that will be used in the production of 3D concrete panels.

“[The delays is] due to the outbreak of [COVID-19] in the state of Italy and the suspension of air traffic, which affected the presence of Italian installation and operation specialists to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,” the firm, which manufacturers construction materials, said.

Al Kathiri pointed out that it has already imported all the necessary equipment and machinery for the production lines.

“[These have] been stored at the factory site in Sudaity City… It will be installed, operated, and the human and technical personnel in the factory will be trained by Italian specialists, after completing the necessary procedures for their attendance,” Al Kathiri said.

(Reporting by Cleofe Maceda; editing by Seban Scaria)

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