Property boss urges greater protection for expat investors

MAG Group CEO says Dubai must be more transparent to drive economy.

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By  Alex Delmar-Morgan Published  July 29, 2009

Greater protection for investors is needed in Dubai to drive its economy, a property boss said on Wednesday.

Mohammed Nimer, CEO of developer MAG Group Properties, said the emirate must focus on attracting expatriates and forge better relations with foreign companies - as well as increasing transparency.

"The future domestic economy must focus heavily on expatriates and foreign companies and its business relationships with the rest of the world. There must be greater transparency, tougher regulations to protect investors and a basic safety net on provisions for the expatriate community upon which the economy is dependent," he said in a statement on Wednesday.

A large supply of residential and commercial property is yet to be absorbed by the market, he added.

There have been repeated calls by lawyers in Dubai to give investors, particularly in property, greater protection.

Legal tussles between investors and developers in Dubai are common. Lawyers say many investors enter into contracts heavily weighted in favour of developers.

Nimer, whose Mag Group has a portfolio worth AED3bn, also called on Dubai to return to ‘basics' through its tax-free business hub and ability to attract foreign direct investment.

3614 days ago
mart m

i am surprised at some expat comments. to make it simple, the uae have always had laws to favour the locals. there never was especial laws for investors. so investors with 7 properties are even 100 properties will not have favoured status when it comes to residency. developers are mostly locals, and the laws always favour the locals. in fact that is why some of the big cases being argued now are not done in uae courts, they have to go to usa for their cases to be heard (to get justice).save your legal fees, you will not get justice in uae. these laws were always known, and investors spent their hard earned money knowing all this. so what now. as i see things the uae laws will not become more favourable for expats or investors. the locals will not suffer as they are so few they can be easliy looked after.in fact this is better for them, (less traffic etc)unfortunately the current investor will suffer and no one will help.so take what u can salvage and any loss should be used as a lesson for the future

3614 days ago
thomas

Dubai has always been a place which attracted people because of the rate at which it was growing and the secure and vibrant lifestyle compared to many countries around the world. The recession is a world wide phenomenon and Dubai is part of it. However Dubai should realize that the expatriates living here are a major factor hand in hand with the UAE nationals in making this emirate a great place to live. It seems that during the boom, somewhere Dubai forgot about the middle and lower income groups. This needs correction. To revive the lost confidence and the construction boom once again, Dubai should change the concept of one sided contracts and respect the interest of the investors (both local and expatriate). Property owners should be provided with long term residencies.The banks should provide an option of fixed interest rates rather than only variable interest rates. The land department should be transperant with the term "free hold" and also provide a clear understanding of transfer of properties especially in cases of inheritence for expatriates. The real estate market needs to mature itself immediately. I stand with this nation to come back strong onceagain.

3614 days ago
Dilip

Who is important Developer or Investor?. Everybody agreeing investor is more important and their rights and pleasing them is fore important than a developer. Because this nation and developer are together needed investors. But developers and the authorities are not realized that. Without investors no projects can be sell or utilized.Even the governments infrastuructre projects requires millions of people to be here to benefit and earn returns. Hence Dubai's local population alone cannot sufficient to raise-up the nations. It need expatriates hand to support. I'm the one who moved from Saudi to Dubai few years before. Now, returning back to Saudi and taking our my investments into my home land. I feel insecure about my investments and I'm not getting justice. The crook developers contract papers having very wrong clauses.To buy justice I need 10's of thousand dirhams which I don't have. I'm loosing confident ove this nation.

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