Thursday, March 30, 2006

Dubai Real Estate Companies unveil multibillion dollar projects in Morocco

In a landmark deal with the Government of Morocco, Emaar Properties and Dubai International Properties (DIP) yesterday announced projects worth $18.9 billion in Morocco, which is part of a commitment surpassing $20billion by UAE investors over 10 years.
Mohammed Abdullah Al Gergawi, the UAE Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs and Chairman of Dubai Holding, the parent company of Dubai International Properties and Mohammed Ali Abbar, Chairman of Emaar signed memoranda of understanding with their eight partners for eight major mixed-use developments, in the presence of King Mohammed VI of Morocco , at his palace in Casablanca yesterday. The decision is a shot in the arm for the real estate sector in the UAE and understandably the market is in an upbeat mood.

“Together, the UAE’s investment in Morocco will exceed Dh 73 billion ,of which Dubai Holding is involved in $12 billion worth of projects that will be executed over a period of 10 years”, said Al Gergawi.

“Today , we are announcing $5.4 billion worth of projects, part of $6.9 billion investment in Morocco, spread across Rabat, Casablanca, Tangiers and Marakkech”,stated Mohammed Ali Abbar, Chairman of Emaar.“This is probably the only country that has vibrant colours and smell. It has long beaches, four seasons and high growth potential. Besides, it’s very much Moorish.” he added.

Two new projects,Dubai Towers-Casablanca and Marina de Casablanca were launched as part of the agreement with Dubai Holding. Dubai Towers , worth $600 million will cover an area of 240,000 sqft and will be a mixed use development comprising two buildings – a hotel and an office tower. The whole complex will offer office space`, residential apartments, retail and entertainment facilities. Marina de Casablanca too will feature offices, retail and entertainment amenities, marina hotels and landscaped spaces. The projects also include Amwaj, a massive $ 2 billion community development project, already under construction in Al Rabat.

Emaar is investing $5.4 billion in Morocco , as part of overall plans to develop six projects which could surpass $6.9 billion. The company signed three MoUs with the Moroccan Government on three projects, stretching from the Atlas Mountains to the Atlantic coast- Oukaimeden in Marakkech, Tinja near Tangiers and Saphira in Rabat . These are mixed used developments that will include golf and ski communities, Riveira living, luxury spas and resorts.

Emaar will open its Morocco headquarters in Marakkech and offices in all the major cities to commence the construction works. The latest series of deals is Emaar’s fourth move in Morocco following its announcement of the $327 million Amelkis – a golfing and residential development in Marakkech and Bahia Bay another luxurious golfing and residential community development. Stating that Morocco is central to Emaar’s overseas expansion Ali Abbar promised that the project will incorporate ‘all the most successful elements of Emaar’s many signature lifestyle communities.
(Source: Gulf News)

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