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Industry reacts to UAE's 'game-changing' economic reforms

"The best Eid Al Fitr gift for the business community” is how one developer described the country's recent legislative and economic updates

Developers have reacted positively to the UAE's latest reforms to foreign worker visa requirements [representational image].
Developers have reacted positively to the UAE's latest reforms to foreign worker visa requirements [representational image].

Real estate developers have reacted positively to UAE economic reforms that could save the private sector $3.8bn (AED14bn) per year. 

In another round of legislative and economic changes for the country, the UAE Cabinet green-lit new insurance rules for foreign workers in the private sector, and fresh visa measures.

Responding to the reforms, chairman of Gemini Property Developers, Sudhakar Rao, called the decision a "game-changing move" that will cut the cost of doing business in the UAE "significantly".

READ: Private sector to recover $4bn under UAE's foreign worker plan

The release of a $3.8bn in bank guarantees will help to "accelerate" growth for "many companies" in the UAE, Rao said.

He added: "The new visa rule will help companies bring international customers and visitors with less cost. It will help the exhibition, conference, business, and leisure tourism sectors, and will help the tourist flow during Expo 2020 Dubai."

Partner and director of Danube Properties, Atif Rahman, said: "The latest announcement reflects the UAE’s visionary leadership and pragmatic approach in accelerating the pace of economic growth." 

Rahman said the decision to eliminate an $816 (AED3,000) bank guarantee and release $3.8bn of "idle cash" into the economy would encourage "private companies to reinvest in the economy" to stimulate growth and development.

READ: Binghatti says economic reforms will trigger ‘significant growth’ in Dubai

"The new visa rule will help the tourism, hospitality, exhibition, conference, and extended-stay sectors," he said. 

"It will also help the real estate sector a great deal, as foreign investors will no longer worry about their visa, stay and the fees – all are being made flexible. We expect a solid flow of investment from foreign countries, as the new announcement will boost investor confidence," Rahman continued. 

“The new moves will help the economy become more competitive, more flexible, and will help in the ease of doing business. It is a great move, and the best Eid Al Fitr gift for the business community.”

Chief executive officer of Samana Group of Companies, Imran Farooq, said the reforms would "enhance UAE’s economic competitiveness".

He added: "The new legislation will bring in and retain quality talent in the UAE, reduce the burden on employers, allowing them to reinvest and grow."

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Construction Week - Issue 733
Mar 14, 2019