Rents under pressure in UAE northern emirates says report

The Sharjah waterfront. Property sales and rents in the UAE’s northern emirates have come under pressure. (Reuters)
Updated 18 January 2018
0

Rents under pressure in UAE northern emirates says report

LONDON: Residential property sales and rents in the UAE’s northern emirates slowed in 2017, according to a report by bayut.com, the Dubai-based property portal.

The findings were based on prices advertised by real estate agencies on behalf of their clients on bayut.com, and not representative of actual real estate transactions conducted.

The report said studios in Naemiyah in Ajman were the most popular area for renting flats, but average annual rents of 20,000 dirhams ($5,444) were down 13 percent on 2016.

In the same area, annual average rents for one bedroom apartments at 27,000 dirhams represented a decline of 3.5 percent, while two bed apartments at 35,000 dirhams were down 12 percent.

Emirates City in Ajman was the top choice for homebuyers, with studios, one and two bedroom apartments going for 202,000 dirhams, 269,000 dirhams and 357,000 dirhams, respectively — down from 2016.

The next most popular area was Al-Sawan, also in Ajman. Studios here underwent the most significant increase of just under 3 percent, for an average asking price of 309,000 dirhams. However, one and two-bedroom properties declined in price by 2 percent to 410,000 dirhams and 577,000 dirhams.


France’s Total has officially left Iran: oil minister

Updated 20 August 2018
0

France’s Total has officially left Iran: oil minister

  • Total said it would be impossible to remain in Iran unless it received a specific waiver from Washington, which was not granted
  • Total would have been highly vulnerable to US penalties for remaining in Iran
TEHRAN: French energy giant Total has officially quit its multi-billion-dollar gas project in Iran, Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said on Monday, following the reimposition of US sanctions.
“Total has officially left the agreement for the development of phase 11 of South Pars (gas field). It has been more than two months that it announced that it would leave the contract,” he told parliament’s news agency ICANA.
Zanganeh also appeared before parliament to underline the dire state of Iran’s oil and gas facilities, which he said were “worn out” and in need of renovation that Iran could not afford.
The United States said in May that it was abandoning the 2015 nuclear deal and reimposing sanctions on Iran in two phases in August and November.
The second phase will target Iran’s oil industry.
The other parties to the nuclear deal — Britain, France, Germany, China and Russia — have vowed to stay in the accord but their companies risk huge penalties if they keep doing business in Iran.
Total had already said it would be impossible to remain in Iran unless it received a specific waiver from Washington, which was not granted.
Total signed up in July 2017 for the $4.8 billion project to develop the field off Iran’s southern coast, as the lead partner alongside the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) and Iran’s Petropars.
It was due to make an initial $1 billion investment, but the company said in May that it had spent less than €40 million on the project to date, as uncertainty over US actions mounted.
Total would have been highly vulnerable to US penalties for remaining in Iran.
The company has $10 billion of capital employed in its US assets, and US banks are involved in 90 percent of its financing operations, Total said in May.
It remains unclear whether CNPC will take over Total’s stake in the project.
Iran remains wary of relying on Chinese firms after bad experiences in the past. A previous contract for CNPC to develop the field at South Pars was suspended in 2011 after it failed to make progress.
The urgent need for investment to upgrade Iran’s dilapidated energy infrastructure was a key motivator behind its decision to join the 2015 nuclear deal.
Zanganeh appeared in parliament on Monday to answer questions on safety concerns following a number of recent fires at refineries.
“A big part of the oil industry has been worn out and the necessary renovation has not taken place,” he told parliament, according to the official IRNA news agency.
He said there were 10 cases per day of tubes perforating in Iran’s southern facilities, and that some refineries were as much as 80 years old, “whereas the useful life of an industrial unit is 30 years.”
“We have no resources for renovating them,” he added.