DUBAI: Qatar remains a rich, prospering nation and boasts of the highest GDP per capita in the world. No surprises then when we find that some of the best assets in the world are owned by Qatari nationals.
In England alone, Qatari investors own 20 percent of Camden market; high-end store Harrods; 87 storys of EU’s tallest building, the Shard; the London Olympic village; almost 50 percent of the most expensive apartment block in the world located at at 1 Hyde Park; the Chelsea Barracks site, as well as the US embassy building.
These monolithic investments provide an insight into the power and wealth of Qatari investors, and the affluence is evident on the country’s streets as well. Qataris enjoy one of the best standards of life in the world and generally rub shoulders with who’s who of the world.
The Qatari real estate market is also thriving. Buoyed by the upcoming FIFA 2022 World Cup, the realty sector is seeing a massive surge in activity in both residential and commercial segments.
However, the football World Cup has not really restricted Qatari investors from looking for even greener pastures elsewhere in order to get a bigger roar for the riyal.
Apart from Europe and other world markets, Qataris have kept a keen eye on its next-door neighbor, Dubai, one of the fastest rising global cities in the world with a plethora of opportunities for both investors and professionals.
Dubai has long arrived on the world scene and is now working toward cementing its position as a serious contender at the global level. Its far-sighted vision to move away from oil dependence and diversify its economy has paid off, with real estate sector paving the way for Dubai’s phenomenal progress.
Qataris know that well, which is why they are among leading investors in the realty sector of Dubai.
Qatari per capita investment in Dubai’s real estate between Jan. 1, 2014 and November 15, 2014 reached AED937 million according to Dubai Land Department (DLD) figures.
The number of investors? A mere 100 — meaning the per capital investment was 9.37 million.
The staggering numbers are not only reflective of the power of Qatari wealth but also the promise that Dubai’s real estate holds.
Qatari investors fully understand the potential of Dubai’s property sector and the massive per capita investment speaks volumes about their trust in Dubai’s future, a trust reinforced when Qatari investors again put in AED522 million into Dubai realty in the first three months of 2015.
Apart from the DLD figures, leading UAE property portal Bayut.com (https://www.bayut.com) provided some insights into the search trends of Qatari vis-a-vis Dubai market. Bayut noted that of all searches by Qataris into the Dubai real estate market, a majority (78.29 percent) searched for properties that were up for sale in Q1 2015, compared to a mere 45.31 percent who did that in Q1 2014. On the other hand, only 21.71 percent Qataris searched rental spaces in Q1 2015, compared to 54.69 percent last year.
Within these searches, apartments remained the most searched unit type, taking up 80.61 percent of the searches.
The favorite areas for apartment searches remained, in order of most queries, Downtown Dubai, Dubai Marina, Dubai Sports City and Jumeirah Lake Towers. Average Q1 2015 prices in these areas were AED4,009,410, AED1,213,221, AED742,617 and AED635,845, respectively.
However, Bayut said there was a quarter on quarter considerable rise in searches for villas as well, the searches almost tripling from 7.55 percent to 18.5 percent.
The increased interest of Qataris clearly shows that Dubai and its real estate sector continue to be a major attraction for investors from around the globe, are throning the place despite the negativities attached to it time and again.
Dubai’s economy no more relies on oil that it was once belittled for and the real estate sector has become one of the leading sectors in a diversified economy.
With the Expo 2020 approaching, the sun is certain to shine brighter over the Dubai real estate sector, and those investing today will surely find themselves among happy news in the months to come.