Apr 16 2012
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Sharjah gets dedicated auto zone
Monday, Apr 16, 2012
Sharjah: Sharjah’s scattered used-car and auto-parts trade now has an opportunity to organise along more formal lines with the launch of the Dh1.5 billion Sharjah Auto Zone, a massive 13,000 square foot facility adjacent to Emirates Industrial City.
Plots have gone on sale at an introductory rate of Dh60 per square foot, which will be scaled up gradually, according to a top official at Giga Investment, which is managing the sales process. These plots can then be developed to house showrooms or offices. The minimum plot size is 7,000 square feet.
All of the support infrastructure works, including utility connections, are in place. There is also an auction house.
“Sharjah’s authorities had been trying to rectify the situation since 2006, and now there is a real opportunity for the auto trade to make it happen.”
Giga Investment is handling the process on behalf of Saudi Arabia’s Al Hanoo Real Estate Co, which is the master developer and also the driving force behind Emirates Industrial City.
The Sharjah Auto Zone is divided into three clusters, one of which will be for used cars and service centres, while the other two will be for auto parts and heavy equipment. Plots are available in all three. Dubai has had a dedicated used car cluster in Ras Al Khor for some time, and Abu Dhabi also has one now located well outside the city in Shamkha.
Industrial real estate
At an introductory rate of Dh60 a square foot, Giga Investment believes the cost is accessible enough for its intended audience. Apart from those in the auto trade, these plots can also be acquired by investors looking for options in the local industrial real estate, which is currently providing some handsome yields. In fact, right through the last two years there has been a demand spurt for prime industrial property, either as plots or completed facilities such as warehouses.
“There are no limits on the number of plots that can be acquired by an individual investor,” Ameen said. “In fact, we are offering flexible payment terms — of up to three years — for such investors. We will also help them in the development and marketing processes.
“UAE and GCC nationals can acquire the plots on freehold as per the real estate law in Sharjah. Following the introductory period, we will scale up the price gradually.”
Sharjah’s auto trade has historically concentrated on demand from other Middle East markets as well as Africa and the CIS.
“By paying as low as Dh212,400, one can take possession of the showroom plots,” Ameen said. “There would be an escrow account to safeguard customer investment, a gated community with cameras and 24-hour security and the interesting thing is that the park is very close to the port as well as airport.”
By Manoj Nair, Associate Editor
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