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Dubai headquartered developer Damac Properties makes further inroads into Iraq.

Damac Properties based in the United Arab Emirates, announced in November 2012 that it had signed a memorandum of understanding

(MOU) with state-backed Al Fao General Engineering Company, a unit of the Iraqi Ministry of Housing and Construction, to develop real

estate projects in Iraq.

The accord creates a joint venture company between Al Fao and Damac which is to start to develop properties on Ministry of Housing and

Construction sites across Iraq, a statement said. In what has proved to be a rapidly firming arrangement, concluded a mere four weeks

after Damac agreed a blanket MOU with the Iraqi ministry at the Cityscape Global 2012 real estate exhibition and conference, held in

Dubai, to develop a mix of projects in the capital Baghdad and environs.

Ziad El Chr, managing director at Damac Properties, described the nature of the progress made as a result of the new

deal.

"This agreement formalises our relationship with the Iraqi government and is the first step in developing projects in Iraq," he said. "The joint

venture with Al Fao General Engineering brings together two industry experts enabling the swift development of the country," El Chr

added.

Iraqi Minister of Housing and Construction, Mohammad Al Darraji, speaking at the Cityscape event, reported that construction and

infrastructure projects in the northern Arabian Gulf state worth US$ 10.4 billion are expected to be approved early in 2013, while his ministry

currently has 65 projects at a value of US$ 3 billion containing 60,000 housing units already underway.

Damac owns two existing plots of land in Baghdad, and the firm is presently engaged on developing concepts and designs appropriate to

these sites from its offices in Baghdad, saying in its statement that these would be revealed in the not too distant future. Work on Ministry

of Housing and Construction projects are expected to begin early next year in Iraq, after a full feasibility study of the land has concluded

and the development type composition decided.

Beside Dubai and Abu Dhabi in its UAE domestic market, the company is working extensively abroad in Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Qatar and

Saudi Arabia. The firm has completed 37 buildings as of November comprising 7,817 properties, apartments in the vast majority of cases, with

an additional 65 buildings ongoing in the Middle East and North Africa region.

Copyright Andy McTiernan. All rights reserved.

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Publication:Andy McTiernan Property & Economy Bulletin
Geographic Code:7UNIT
Date:Nov 18, 2012
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