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Positive investors sentiment seen at Cityscape Global 2010

DUBAI: A wave of investor optimism kicked off Cityscape Global 2010 on Monday, Oct 5, after a series of confidence-boosting economic news in Dubai and other emerging markets.

In a press release posted on the Cityscape Global 2010 website, Cityscape chief operating officer, Roham Marwaha said: “There has been a flurry of good business news throughout the emerging markets that have boosted investor sentiment, but none more so than Dubai recently.”

While Dubai World’s successful US$25 billion (RM77.48 billion) loan restructuring was the catalyst, there has been other positive news including the US$1.25 billion dual-tranche bond issued by Dubai government last week, added Marwaha.

The bond has since been four times oversubscribed and will be used for other infrastructure projects.

Meanwhile, Nakheel has confirmed it had paid nearly US$1 billion to creditors and would be restarting work on a few of its stalled projects. After increasing its stake in mortgage lender Tamweel to 57%, Dubai Islamic bank declared that it would resume lending by end of 2010.

Additionally, Marwaha noted that the Dubai Real Estate Regulatory Agency has announced that it would work with banks to raise up to US$1.36 billion to finish 48 developments currently on hold.

US-based investment guru, Tom J Barrack, a keynote speaker at the conference, claimed that smart money is now focusing on emerging markets as many have dramatically outperformed more mature markets such as the US and Europe in recent years.

“Many developed economies are heavily indebted in addition to running annual budget deficits, compounding their debt levels. These scenarios will not unwind overnight; it will take time. On the other hand, developing economies are not running deficits and are not nearly so indebted, allowing their economies to grow quicker, giving higher returns,” reasoned Barrack.

On the exhibition floor, sentiments were similar. The founder of Crystal Lagoons Corporation, the developer of the largest lagoon in world in Egypt expressed his confidence that Dubai and the wider region will come back.

However, he noted that if a developer can add value, the projects can make a good investment regardless of the current global financial situation.

Phillippe Chaix, managing director of Paris La Defense, a mixed-use redevelopment in Paris, showed his optimism by exhibiting at the event, despite Middle Easterners making up only 3% of its investors.

“We have come here in a bid to increase awareness of the project throughout the region, which has a huge potential for us,” said Chaix.

Cityscape Global is one of the world’s largest international business-to-business real estate investment and development conferences held annually, and features an exhibition that brings together regional and international companies from various fields related to property. 

This year's event is held from October 4 to 7, 2010 at the Dubai International Exhibition Centre.

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