The manager of Emirates REIT, a Dubai-listed real estate investment trust, has cited a “steady improvement” in the Dubai commercial property market after posting a comprehensive profit of 51 million dirhams ($13.9 million) for the first half of 2021.   

The profit follows a loss of 72 million dirhams for the first half of 2020, according to results reported to Nasdaq Dubai. 

The trust’s manager Equitativa cited the divestment of a commercial floor in Index Tower, Dubai and the receipt of outstanding rent payments from Jebel Ali School as positive factors during the first half of 2021.   

In a press release, Equitativa said the profits demonstrated the REIT’s improvements to its portfolio since the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, adding that the trust had seen total property income increase by 8.1 percent to 124.9 million dirhams, including a gain from a unit divestment of 23.9 million dirhams.   

"Driven by the payment of some overdue past rents by Jebel Ali School, the adjustment of expected credit loss provision lead to a net gain of $7 million (25.7 million dirhams) versus a previous net charge of $3.8 million (13.9 million dirhams) booked in the first half of 2020,” Equitativa said.    

“The REIT’s EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) for the first half of 2021 increased by 93.2 percent year-on-year to $29.7 million (109.1 million dirhams) compared to $15.4 million (56.6 million dirhams) in the first half of 2020.”   

Sylvain Vieujot, executive deputy chairman of Equitativa said they are “beginning to see a recovery” in the Dubai property market, fueled by the “highly proactive measures” by the government.   

“Some positive milestones were achieved during the first half of the year, including the divestment of a half vacant shell and core floor at a significant valuation gain in Index Tower. We also signed an agreement with Jebel Ali School, resulting in a significant payment towards its outstanding rent,” he said.  

(Writing by Imogen Lillywhite; editing by Cleofe Maceda) 

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