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Dubai growth 'fueling' Damac's global expansion

The real estate heavyweight is eyeing major urban regeneration projects in Europe

Wael Al-Lawati is senior vice president of international development at Damac.
Wael Al-Lawati is senior vice president of international development at Damac.

Dubai's property sector has strengthened Damac's overseas expansion plans and the developer is pushing ahead with urban regeneration projects spanning two continents, a company official told Construction Week

Damac is eyeing urban regeneration projects in Europe as part of a new growth strategy supported by its continued expansion in Dubai, Wael Al-Lawati, senior vice president of international development at Damac, told Construction Week.

The company's first urban regeneration project is the $1bn (AED3.6bn) Mina Sultan Qaboos Waterfront in Oman, where the developer plans to transform the historic port into a luxury mixed-use waterfront development. 

READ: Damac says construction imminent on Oman's $1bn Mina Sultan Qaboos

Damac is looking for further opportunities in Europe, where it is already building a luxury high-rise tower in the gentrified urban regeneration district of Battersea, south-west London.

“We are looking at other projects around the world in terms of either greenfield sites or regeneration, because there are lots of opportunities in places around Europe where governments have excellent locations in strategic parts of town where they need to find a new use for something,” Al-Lawati said.

“We are looking at a couple of locations in Europe and the Far East. 

“We have the opportunity of knowing what regeneration entails, the complexity, the cost, and also the opportunity, because you get the best locations. It comes with its price, it has its issues, but in some cases it’s the only option and the way forward,” he said. 

“We are very fast and we have the financial capabilities, and we believe in Dubai’s growth continuing to fuel our expansion abroad, so we’re not slowing down yet.”

Al-Lawati revealed Damac's plan to move on the urban regeneration space during Cityscape Global 2018, which was held in Dubai. He did not reveal when Damac hoped to get its new regeneration projects over the line.

Damac revealed last year that Croatia was one of several European countries its international arm was exploring for expansion opportunities.

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Construction Week - Issue 745
Jun 30, 2019