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UK property investment in GCC unhindered by Brexit

by Jumana Abdel-Razzaq on Apr 20, 2017

UK investors continue to target GCC property market.
UK investors continue to target GCC property market.

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UK investors are continuing to focus on the GCC property market despite implications of the Brexit referendum, as industry leaders find it important for the UK to continue to attract overseas business.

With this, a government-led delegation of UK investors and developers are set to visit the Middle East to strike deals with investors in the gulf in Abu Dhabi on 25 April and Dubai on 26 April.

In fact, total international investment into the UK from the Middle East topped $1.4bn (AED 5.1bn) in 2016.

Sir Edward Lister, who is the chairman of the government’s Homes and Communities Agency, is leading the UK delegation.

He said: “The Emirates have always been strong investors in the UK, not just in London, but throughout the country and we have always welcomed that investment.

“In spite of Brexit, the underlying property dynamics in the UK remain unchanged. The demand for all types of property is absolutely enormous.

“The UK government target for housing is 250,000 homes a year, and in a good year we are only achieving 170,000 so the pressure is on for housing across the country and we need with that modern office accommodation as well as industrial and distribution warehousing.”

Trade between the UK and the GCC has soared by 185% between 1999 and 2015, with the UAE emerging as the UK’s third largest export partner outside of Europe and the 11th largest trading partner for the UK overall.

In the wake of Brexit, the UK’s international relationships are expected to strengthen, and specifically growing within the property sector.