Monday, May 3, 2010

India most attractive market: Emaar chief

Mohamed Bin Ali Alabbar, chairman of Dubai-based real estate major Emaar, finds India as one of the most attractive markets and would continue to invest in the country through its joint venture company Emaar MGF.

Emaar, which is a listed company with 68% public holding and the rest with the Dubai government, has invested around $1 billion in India so far. Alabbar said that the continued growth even during the period when the global economy was facing one of the worst financial turmoils proves the strength of the Indian economy.

Besides United Arab Emirates, Emaar is operating in 16 countries including US, UK, France In Canada. Its JV company Emaar MGF is presently planning to tap the capital market in India. Alabbar said that the exercise is mainly aimed at listing the company on Indian stock exchanges, which will bring in more transparency in the company's operations and thereby help in instilling confidence among the various stakeholders including customers in the company.

Talking about the financial crisis, he hoped that it is now over and things will improve. The recently reported financial crisis of Dubai World is manageable and will be contained, he said. "All sectors of the country are performing well," he said.

Talking about India, he said he was pleasantly surprised as the country has returned to high growth radar. He said that Emaar MGF is doing exceptionally well. In fact, he is so confident that he refused to change the company's strategy to delve into the affordable housing segment as most of other real estate companies in the country followed to beat the slowdown in the sector.

"In order to protect its brand, Emaar MGF will continue to build houses for middle and upper-middle segments," he said. He said that his group brings in certain quality and specification with its brand, which is not possible in the pure affordable segment. However, he added that it will provide value for money to its customers.

Even during the slowdown period, he said that his company ensured that no project is delayed. In India, he said that all the projects are on schedule. Despite problems and slowdown, the company is ready to deliver all the 1168 apartments of the Commonwealth Games village. He said all the works have been completed and the delivery is being given to the authority.

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