Udaipur : The latest UAE Cabinet’s twin decisions to extend the residency permit up to 10 years for foreign investors, qualified professionals and talented students as well as offer 100 percent foreign ownership of private companies are expected to steer large investment into the country’s real estate market and Danube Group and its real estate arm Danube Properties are well-positioned to serve the new property buyers and investors.
“This might come as a pleasant surprise to a lot of people as it somewhat breaks the taboo that foreigners might not be granted a longer term residency permit – in line with the policy of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member countries,” MrRizwan Sajan, Chairman, Danube Group and Danube Properties, says.
“The plan to allow 100 percent foreign ownership of companies registered in the UAE – is another landmark move that will place the UAE ahead of its regional peers and help the country to attract more global talents.
“These two decisions strengthen our conviction and confidence in the UAE’s leadership and these will usher in a new dawn of unprecedented socio-economic growth.”
Dubai-based developer Danube Properties has a Dh3.14 billion portfolio of 3,628 residential homes ready to serve a growing number of investors from South Asia, mostly India.
Indian nationals, who form the largest foreign investor group in Dubai’s real estate, have bought properties worth Dh83.65 billion in the last five years – from 2013 to 2017 – in Dubai’s property sector, according to statistics compiled by Dubai Land Department(DLD).
They invested Dh15.6 billion in Dubai’s real estate in 2017, Dh12 billion in 2016 and Dh20 billion in 2015 – their highest in a year, according to DLD.
Indian nationals form the largest expatriate population in the UAE and they are also the largest foreign owners of business establishments in the country.
As an established player in the UAE with a credible history of quarter of a century of sound business practice, Danube Group is well prepared to serve a sizeable chunk of the property buyers, Mr Sajan, says.
“As a business group with deep roots in India and the UAE, Danube Group is well positioned to support investors from India and other South Asian countries, Sajan says. “With 827 homes delivered on time and on budget and a further 870 homes being readied for delivery this year, Danube Properties has a solid track record to support new investors. We still have nearly 2,000 units at various stages of development coming up in the next two years.
“Indians are the largest expatriate community in the UAE and the largest non-GCC foreign investor group as in Dubai’s real estate and the new announcements will encourage them to buy property en masse due to the 10-year residency scheme.”
Like the United States and other developed countries, the UAE has always benefitted from its open-door policy, the inclusion of foreigners. The expatriates have had their share of contribution to the remarkable progress made by the country in the last 47 years since the formation of the UAE federation.
The UAE which has one of the world’s highest ratio of expatriate population, largely depends on foreigners to support the economic activities – including public services. However, all of them have to renew their visas once in every two or three years – line up for medical tests, Emirates ID card and residence visas.
The 10-year residence permit will now change that. This will strengthen the personal loyalty of the expatriates to the UAE and encourage them to invest in their future. They will no longer plan their savings and future within a two- to three-year tenure. A 10-year residency will encourage them to invest in buying property, equity, bonds and other assets.
However, the UAE’s visionary leadership has been renowned for their far-sightedness and out-of-the-box thinking. In 2002, Dubai was the first economy to open its land and property sector for foreign freehold ownership – again, a taboo that no one thought would be broken. Later, it became a UAE-wide norm.
Similarly, the twin decision to allow 10-year residency to foreigners and grant 100 percent foreign ownership in businesses will give the country’s economy an unprecedented push that we have not seen in the last ten years. These are timely decisions and the right step towards building a great future.