Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Abu Dhabi: Aabar Properties, a subsidiary of International Petroleum Investment Company (Ipic) is constructing 6,000 units in Abu Dhabi with some being complete, while others in various stages of construction, Minister of Energy and Managing Director of Ipic Suhail Al Mazroui said after touring some of the projects of Aabar properties in Abu Dhabi.

“Aabar Properties owns many projects in Abu Dhabi. Some are complete like The Wave mixed use tower in Reem Island while some are being transferred to clients. There are other projects which are in the design stage. We are focusing on quality while constructing,” said Al Mazroui while speaking to reporters in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday.

It is not known when these units would be completed or the total investments as Mazroui did not elaborate on it.

When asked whether there has been any delay in projects due to slowdown in the economy, Al Mazroui said the delay has been minimal and is acceptable.

“Some projects are late or delayed because we are keen to maintain the quality. We don’t want to deliver the project which we will have problems in the long run. Quality is the most important thing for us.”

According to ratings agency Standard and Poors, UAE property prices forecast to drop by 10 per cent on average this year due to falling oil prices and other factors. House prices in Dubai are forecast to drop further by 10 per cent, while those in Abu Dhabi could register a “low-single-digit” decline due to weaker investor sentiment, S&P said in a note last month.

Speaking on the economy, Al Mazroui said the UAE’s economy is still growing and the impact of drop in oil prices is much lower than that of other countries.

“Yes, there is an economic crisis in the world, but thankfully, the UAE’s economy is doing well and it’s diversified. The number of tourists to the UAE is growing, and this encourages us to continue to develop infrastructure because it’s important for us to make sure infrastructure here is the best worldwide. “

“The new projects coming online in Abu Dhabi such as the Guggenheim museum and other projects on Saadiyat Island will help refresh the market in Abu Dhabi. When we develop projects, we don’t just look at one or two years, we look at the long term because the financial cycle is short and it fluctuates.”

Aabar properties has been building steady portfolio since its launch in 2010. It is developing a number of projects in Al Reem Island, Al Raha beech, Rawdhat and Saraya in Abu Dhabi.

Saraya 1 and Saraya 2 projects on Abu Dhabi Corniche are 90 per cent complete, according to Khalifa Al Mheiri, Chief Executive Officer of Aabar Properties.

The two towers will have more than 120 units consisting town houses and three to six bedrooms for luxury living.

“The Kite residences in Al Reem Island with 126 apartments will be ready in the next two months while sixty per cent of The Wave mixed use project in Al Reem Island has been sold with people living since one month,” Al Mheiri said.

The company plans to boost its projects in Dubai as the expo 2020 draws near and is considering expanding in China and Europe. It is constructing several projects in Jeddaf and Business Bay, Al Mheiri added.

Aabar Investments announced in March that it has signed a €3.6 billion loan facility with a syndicate of global banks in order to refinance several of the company’s facilities.

By Fareed Rahman Senior Reporter

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