World Expo 2020 to boost UAE real estate and tourism sector

Updated 29 November 2013
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World Expo 2020 to boost UAE real estate and tourism sector

With Dubai winning the World Expo 2020 bid, the emirate requires around $43 billion (47 percent of the estimated 2013 GDP) to significantly upgrade its infrastructure according to a research report by Deutsche Bank.
This will boost employment, population and tourist growth.
A bulk of this investment will go into expanding the hotel and leisure industry, while around $10 billion will be spent to improve transportation infrastructure.
The biggest beneficiary should be the real estate sector, which has to cater to the increased demand for new hotel and infrastructure projects.
Deutsche Bank’s report continues to see positive momentum in the Dubai property market, triggered by attractive yields and property prices close to historical average.
With Dubai hosting World Expo 2020, the sector should continue to attract strong investor interest.
Dubai property prices are currently up around 50 percent since the 3rd quarter 2011 but still 45 percent below the peak of 2008 and close to the average price of the last 8 years. Compared with other major cities in the world, Dubai offers attractive property prices and rental yields and a low tax environment. Moreover, Dubai’s “safe-haven” status, strategic location and growing tourism sector continue to attract investor interest.
The Al-Maktoum International Airport, the newly developed airport near the Expo site, started passenger operations on 27 October.
When fully completed the airport will be able to handle 12 million tons of cargo and 160 million passengers annually, making it the largest international airport by some margin.
Besides this, Dubai has also initiated an expansion plan for its existing Dubai International Airport to increase its existing capacity from 60 million to 90 million passengers per year by 2018.
Winning the Expo can further facilitate the “Dubai Vision” target of handling 20 million tourist arrivals by 2020.
Increased tourist arrivals and an upbeat business climate are positives for the hotel and leisure industry as well as the retail sector.
About 25 million visitors are expected for the World Expo 2020 event, 71percent of which will be non-domestic visitors.
Dubai was voted as the host city to conduct the World Expo 2020 event in the Bureau of International Expositions’ 154th General Assembly.
This will be the first World Expo to be hosted in the MENASA region.
Dubai was able to outbid the competition from Sao Paulo (Brazil), Ekaterinburg (Russia) and Izmir (Turkey) with its theme of “Connecting minds, Creating the Future”.
The Expo Live support package of 150 million euros for developing countries to aid their participation and the 100 million euro Partnership Fund to spur innovations, ideas and entrepreneurship on sustainable development projects helped sway the votes in Dubai’s favor.


Careem looks to raise up to $200 million in China

Updated 20 November 2018
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Careem looks to raise up to $200 million in China

  • Investment bank China International Capital Corporation (CICC) is advising Dubai-based Careem, but it was not immediately clear when or if a deal would be finalized
  • Careem said in October it had secured $200 million in a new funding round from existing investors

HONG KONG: Careem, Uber’s main Middle East rival, is looking at raising between $100 million and $200 million from Chinese investors, a source with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters.
Investment bank China International Capital Corporation (CICC) is advising Dubai-based Careem, but it was not immediately clear when or if a deal would be finalized, the source said, adding there was a lack of familiarity and interest among Chinese investors in Middle Eastern start-ups.
Beijing-based CICC and Careem both declined to comment.
Reuters reported on Monday that CICC and New York-based investment bank Jefferies were both advising Careem on potential investment options and capital raising, including a possible Middle East M&A deal with Uber.
Careem, which counts German car maker Daimler and China’s largest ride-hailing company DiDi Chuxing among its other backers, competes head-to-head with Uber in most of the major cities in the Middle East.
Careem said in October it had secured $200 million in a new funding round from existing investors, and that it expected to raise more to finance expansion plans.
That investment, combined with previous fund raising and company growth into new markets and segments, gave Careem an estimated valuation of more than $2 billion.
Reuters reported in March that Careem was in early talks to raise as much as $500 million.