Dubai’s Emaar has not cut property prices – Alabbar

​Emaar chairman says good supply still lagging demand in Dubai’s property market



Dubai developer Emaar has not cut property prices in any of its projects in the emirate, despite reports of a slowdown in the emirate’s real estate market, chairman Mohamed Alabbar confirmed on Sunday.

Speaking on the sidelines of an event to launch a $1bn tower in Emaar’s Creek Harbour project, Alabbar asserted that 2016 was turning out to be better year for the company when compared to last year.

“Honestly 2016 has been much better than 2015. We are managing much tighter. [And it’s all because] we are organising ourselves so much better,” he told journalists.

“We are not cutting prices…I don’t see any pullback in our company,” he added.

Read: Dubai’s new Creek tower to be taller than Burj Khalifa

Dubai’s property market has slumped in the last two years following a sharp rise in prices and increasing supply in the market.

Residential property prices in Dubai fell by an average of 10 per cent last year and could be set for a further dip in 2016, a report by consultancy firm Deloitte found.

“Maybe other developers are not doing so well because they are not looking after their customers well, they are not doing their marketing right or maybe their unit configuration is not right, “ said Alabbar.

“To do well you have to go long-term, have a strong balance sheet, believe in your customers and believe in the market. There will be bad years – there will be times when things will slow down.

“But cycles happen in all economies and cities worldwide. If you think property will only go only one way – that’s impossible. But you have to be wise about how you do your business and adjust when it slows down,” he explained.

He also dismissed fears of oversupply in the market.

“I don’t think good supply is meeting demand – basically units with a good price point, a good layout and ethical work,” he added.

Emaar reported double-digit increases in profit and revenues in 2015 despite a Dhs 301m write-down related to the fire at its Address Downtown hotel on December 31.

Read: Emaar says Address hotel fire will not have a ‘material impact’

The company’s net profit for the year increased by 11 per cent to Dhs 4bn from Dhs 3.6bn in 2014.

Revenues increased by 33 per cent to Dhs 13.6bn, partly thanks to a 46 per cent increase in the company’s international business to Dhs 2.6bn.

Emaar said that its international business across the Middle East, North Africa, South Asia and the US now accounts for 19 per cent of revenue.