For a long time, Abu Dhabi’s real estate was available only to local investors. However, new progressive laws were introduced that enable foreigners to place their capital in the local real estate market.
A Game Changer or What?
Talal Al Dhiyebi, one of the biggest developers in Abu Dhabi, and the CEO of Aldar Properties, in a recent interview, stated, “The relaxing of foreign real estate investment laws in Abu Dhabi is a game-changer”.
Aldar Properties is not just one of the biggest development companies in Abu Dhabi, but in the United Emirates as well. In 2019, they built more than 1,500 residential units in Abu Dhabi only. They expect to increase that number by more than 25% in 2020.
The fact that foreigners can own the freehold of properties and land they buy within the investment zones is the cause for this upcoming, mini-revolution in the real estate sector. Until recently, that wasn’t possible for foreigners that could only get 99-year leases.
Real estate developers such as Aldar expect that foreign investors will embrace this new condition and will provide an influx of fresh capital in Abu Dhabi’s real estate market. Analysts at S&P Global also agree that this will open a world of opportunities for foreign investors.
The only unknown factor is the pace of change, how fast it will be, and in which segments it will be felt most.
Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, the son of the president of UAE and crowned prince, has backed this law to be a success. He is also chairman of the Executive Committee of Investment Zones of Abu Dhabi. At the same time, local real estate developers and investors have praised its value. Furthermore, the law evens the playfield between Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Abu Dhabi may be seen as Dubai’s younger brother, but in real estate terms, they are practically equal.
There is no lack of property for sale in Abu Dhabi. The demand is also quite healthy, and there are no signs of an oversupplied market. Far from what we’ve seen in the years before 2019. It was the year when the difference between the supply and the demand was evened. On the other hand, 2020 is going to be a year poised for growth and expansion. All signs and data gathered from official sources point to exactly that.
Investors interested in residential properties should look in the direction of Saadiyat Island, Al Raha Beach, and Al Reem Island. There is also an opportunity in commercial villas, especially in Khalifa City.
Abu Dhabi’s economy is expanding with a pace better than the country’s average. In the real estate language, that means more people looking for accommodation and more companies searching for commercial space.
The progressive modern laws, the support of the top people in the country, the support of the local developers, all point to a successful 2020. We are already seeing positive signs in the first month of the year. It is fair to assume that the trend will last throughout the year.