The government role in supporting and growing Sharjah’s real-estate sector was a key topic under discussion at the Middle East Investment Summit (MEIS) 2016, which ran from May 2-3 at the Ritz-Carlton, Dubai International Financial Centre, Dubai.
The subject was one highlighted by Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq), who is the Gold Sponsor at MEIS 2016, with the government body delivering a speech and hosting a panel discussion during the second day of the event. The authority’s participation focused on the significant take-off of the sector and the governmental support which contributed to its exponential growth in Sharjah.
Among the statistics being highlighted by Shurooq at MEIS 2016 were 2014 figures that revealed a 20 percent growth in Sharjah’s real estate market transactions when compared to 2013, with total revenue from the market growing 57 percent over the same period. It was also revealed that Sharjah’s real estate sector had successfully developed approximately 84.5 million square metres in land space, leading to the establishment of than 60 unique real-estate projects and more than 46 real estate brokers.
Shurooq’s CEO, HE Marwan Bin Jassim Al Sarkal, explained how the strong performance of the sector was the result of Sharjah’s inherent attractive attributes for real estate investment and the efforts made by both itself and other Sharjah government bodies to improve the property development landscape in the emirate.
“Our Gold sponsorship to MEIS 2016 has enabled us access to promising high profile networking opportunities and positioned Sharjah as a strategic gateway for diversified investment development. Sharjah’s real-estate sector has witnessed progressive growth over a period of years, with the last two to three years seeing a particular high degree of take-off. This can be accredited to a number of factors; its important location between east and west, its connecting of both sides of the UAE from the Arabian Gulf and the Indian Ocean, its eight hours flying time from two-thirds of the world’s population, with citizens in these areas residing in some of the most powerful global economies, and its establishment as a central destination for international investments,” said Al Sarkal.
“Allied to these attributes are the sterling efforts of government bodies such as Shurooq and Sharjah Real Estate Registration Department (SRERD), who work in harmony to enhance the emirate’s real estate investment landscape by providing the most appropriate and practical solutions and services. The organisations combine their energies to promote transparency, innovation, leadership and the development of quality processes, to sustain an exceptional real-estate market,” he added.
In discussing SRERD’s efforts to promote Sharjah, Al Sarkal pointed to its programme of seminars and workshops aimed at exploring solutions and pioneering investments in Sharjah’s real-estate market, with the activities having attracted more than 700 attendees this year. He also outlined how the agency has developed its processing systems to create faster and more practical solutions that have enabled new real estate projects to become successfully established in Sharjah.
In speaking about Shurooq’s contribution to Sharjah’s real-estate growth, Al Sarkal highlighted the array of diversified tourism projects it operates, many of which are centrally located in residential and commercial areas. He cited Al Majaz Waterfront, Al Noor Island, Heart of Sharjah and Al Qasba as being major driving forces behind the development of the sector, mentioning that Al Majaz receives more than 800 applications a year for new projects.
Al Sarkal also drew attention to Shurooq’s diversified tourism projects, which include Sir Bu Nuair Island, Al Jabal Resort, The Chebi Khorfakkan, Kalba Eco-tourism project and Mleiha Archaeological and Eco-tourism project. Among the forthcoming developments that he said would continue driving the sector forward are Madinat Al Bedaie with an estimated budget of AED 6.5 Billion, Al Mamzar Peninsula at AED 2.85 Billion and Maryam Island at AED 2.8 Billion.
“Shurooq’s aim is to continue working in conjunction with Sharjah government departments to boost Sharjah’s business and development practices to create the best environment for real estate investors in a global economy. It will do this by maximising Sharjah’s natural competitive advantage, by paying careful attention to what makes an investor happy in Sharjah, by having strategies in place to support and sustain it and by building on the emirate’s position as the Capital of Islamic Culture, the cultural capital of the UAE and the industrial hub of the UAE,” added Al Sarkal.
Shurooq is an independent government organisation that facilitates partnerships and connects investors with relevant opportunities. The authority aims to create authentic destinations that are committed to enhancing the quality of life for citizens and residents, as well as foster an environment where businesses thrive and ideas flourish. Established in 2009, Shurooq strives to encourage investment in Sharjah by adopting the best international standards in providing quality services that help attract investors from across the region and the world.
MEIS 2016 is a leading platform for global investors looking to diversify their portfolios and maximise returns by uncovering the biggest drivers and risks that are rebalancing the investment industry across the globe. For 17 years the annual forum has been an important bellwether for global investments and attracts finance professionals, wealth fund managers, economists and industry commentators to meet under one roof and discuss the challenges and opportunities in an array of markets.