11 June 2008
Abu Dhabi Airports Company will build the first free zone near the international airport on an area of 4 million square metres. The first stage of the project will be completed by 2010. The project is part of the development plan of the airport of the capital, for a value of USD 6.8 billion which, once completed, will serve 50 million passengers a year.
10 June 2008
Nakheel, the company controlled directly by the Dubai government, will build hundred trade centres in the next twenty years. The projects include two Palm Malls on Palm Jumeirah and on Palm Deira, the enlargement of the Ibn Battuta Mall, the Great Mall Dubai in International City and a thematic trade centre named India Mart, which will follow the construction of the Dragon Mart.
10 June 2008
At least nine months more than expected will be needed to be able to admire the world’s tallest skyscraper, Burj Dubai, which already stands out in the heart of the Business Bay. Meanwhile, Emaar, the United Arab Emirates construction giant involved in the building of the skyscraper, announced the construction of a spectacular fountain, among the largest in the world, which will present rhythmic water plays in the lake in front of the imposing building. The opening of the building initially scheduled for December will be postponed to September 2009 “because quality is more important that the date”, Emaar’s chairman Mohammad Ali Alabbar said.
The delay is mainly due to the revision and the change of several architecture elements for obtaining better functionality of the spaces inside the building and to fortuitous circumstances such as the 18 days of suspension of the works last month due to the strong winds or the two-week strike of the workers last year. The completion of Dubai Mall, the world’s largest trade centre linked to Burj, was also delayed because the number of parking spots was increased from 2,000 to 5,000. The mall will be opened together with Burj Dubai. The construction of a 275-metres-long fountain along the lake in front of the skyscraper, whose definitive height still remains top secret, was announced. The water sprays will be shot to heights of over 150 metres – equivalent to that of a 50-storey building – while the water drops will rise to heights of up to three kilometres. The great “water wonder”, which is still unnamed, will cost 140 million euro and will “dance” to Arab, Indian and Western music themes.
05 June 2008
Overseas property investors could collect strong returns in Dubai, an expert has advised.
According to Ahmed Jamal of Emerging Markets Property Advisors, the emirate is one of the best investment markets in the world. This was said to be because it has a very strong rental market, which means investors can enjoy high occupancy rates and healthy rental yields.
Mr Jamal added that many other popular property hotspots have been negatively affected by the credit crunch. However, he stated that the problems in the worldwide economy have not extended as far as Dubai.
“People are talking about a global property crisis but the terminology is incorrect,” he commented.
“There is a crisis in the US and parts of Europe but other places are doing well.”
21 May 2008
Dubai has gained a reputation as a luxury holiday destination, a travel industry expert has stated.
Frances Tuke from the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA) said the region is a “four or five star” location which appeals to affluent visitors. This, she said, has led to tourism generating considerable sums of money for the Dubai economy, which are being pumped into the sector to improve it further.
Ms Tuke believes its emergence as a leading holiday destination has had a profound impact on Dubai and its economic performance in recent years.
She commented: “Dubai, quite a while ago, was really just a desert state; [now] it’s one of the fastest growing cities in the world.”
According to official government figures, Dubai attracted more than six million holidaymakers in 2007. Tourism was said to account for about 18 per cent of its gross domestic product during this period.
15 May 2008
The overall number of people travelling to Dubai is set to go up this year, experts have predicted.
A report by Globalysis revealed that visitor numbers in 2008 are likely to be eight per cent up on those recorded 12 months earlier. The organisation said this would be due to a number of factors, including improvements to the accessibility of Dubai from overseas and successful marketing initiatives.
Furthermore, it stated that its “high-quality tourism offerings” are becoming increasingly attractive to “globally-minded” holidaymakers.
Commenting on the findings, Jason Pereira of Globalysis observed: “The performance of Dubai’s travel and leisure sector in 2008 has been favourable and the outlook moving forward remains bright.”
Meanwhile, Dubai Tourism and Commerce Marketing has revealed about seven million people booked accommodation in the region during 2007. The organisation has predicted that in two years time, this number could possibly increase to ten million.
09 May 2008
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has been flagged up as a good location for overseas property buyers to consider.
According to ShelterOffshore.com, the country currently offers a number of attractions for foreign investors. The website highlighted the recent increase in visitor numbers, as well as the revenues generated by its tourism industry. In addition, the country’s economy was said to have a strong economy which is experiencing a sustainable rate of growth.
This has prompted the website to recommend that overseas property buyers consider possible investment opportunities in the UAE.
ShelterOffshore.com said: “Each emirate is worth closer inspection by would-be property investors.”
The online portal added that the country’s real estate is currently “thriving”, despite ongoing financial problems across the world, such as the credit crunch. This was largely attributed to the fact that these issues have put investors from the UAE off investing abroad and are therefore putting money into the domestic market.
06 May 2008
The ProLeads database, which monitors construction contracts across the Gulf, identifies more than 100 individual projects worth USD 70 billion in hotels and related leisure and tourism facilities under construction or committed in the UAE. The survey identifies Dubai, in particular, as the star performer, with the region’s highest hotel room occupancy rate (84.2 per cent), the highest average room rate (USD 282) and the highest revenue per available room (USD 237).
“We know the Middle East is a fast-developing hotel and tourism market but survey after survey reveals that the UAE hospitality sector is growing on a grand scale, unmatched elsewhere in the world,” said Maggie Moore, exhibition director of The Hotel Show 2008. The premier hotel supplies exhibition takes place at the Dubai International Exhibition and Convention Centre from June 8-10.
The UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) is also optimistic about tourism in the Middle East. “UNWTO identifies the Middle East as the tourism success story of the decade with the region emerging as a strong destination and visitor numbers climbing much faster than the world total,” said Moore as reported by Arabian Business online.
07 April 2008
Burj Dubai, the icon skyscraper of Dubai which is still under construction, has already won the record of the tallest building in the world (its final height, still top secret, should be about 900m). But Dubai is now welcoming the announcement of a new 1,200 metre-tall building, which will establish the new record. The news was reported by the website of the economic magazine Arabian Business, which quoted Australian architect Wood Bagot, winner of the consultancy contract.
The skyscraper, with an investment of over USD61 billion, will be built in the south of the Dubai Emirate, in the heart of the Arabian Canal, a huge project which, cutting deeply through the desert, will carry the sea water along a 75 km-long channel between Jebel Ali and Palm Jumerirah Island. Nakheel, which will carry out the construction works stated that the skyscraper project is still in the designing stage and added that it is still “early to reveal all the details”, including the name of the building itself, temporarily known as the High Tower.
27 March 2008
Creek, the bay around which Dubai was founded and developed, will be transformed into an international art and culture centre. This is the goal of Khor Dubai, an ambitious project which will line along 20 kilometres of coasts museums, theatres, libraries and galleries.
“The initiative is inspired by our historical-cultural heritage and prepares our present to build the future in order to advance the country towards new horizons of development,” commented young Sheikh Majdi, son of Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid and director of Dubai Culture and Arts Authority.
There will be ten theme museums, starting with the already announced museum on the Prophet of Islam Muhammad, 13 theatres, as well as an opera theatre, galleries and institutes of arts and culture. The libraries dedicated to literature, poetry and music will be nine while 72 statues and monuments will rise between the Shindagha area and the Business Bay.