Al Zorah has no plans to borrow - Emirates24|7

Al Zorah has no plans to borrow

The firm will rely on its own financial resources to fund the plan that is expected to cost Dh220bn (CHANDRA BALAN)


Al Zorah Development Company said yesterday it has no plans to borrow from banks or other financial institutions to fund its massive real estate project that involves the construction of a city of 200,000 people near Ajman.

The company, a 50-50 joint venture between the Ajman Government and Lebanon's Solidere, said it will rely on its own financial resources to fund the master-plan that is expected to cost a staggering Dh220 billion.

Speaking at the four-day Cityscape show that ended in Abu Dhabi on Friday, a senior Solidere executive said the company had already secured nearly Dh10 billion in pre-sales and expected more funds to flow in the future.

"We do not have any plans to seek loans whether from banks or any other institution to finance this landmark project," said Mounib Hammoud, Executive Director of Solidere International, an affiliate of Solidere.

"Instead, we decided to rely on our own resources, including the Dh4bn Solidere capital and income from sales of property. We have already nearly secured Dh10bn and we expect more funds in the future. I can tell you for sure the entire project would be funded through such sales and we will not have to seek any external financing," he told Emirates Business.

Hammoud said construction of the project infrastructure has already started and the city will begin to take shape within three to four years. The company said the project, located on the northern coast of Ajman, would cover 12 square kilometres, with a built-up area of nearly 22 million square metres and massive areas of water and green public spaces.

"It is the biggest masterplan announced by the emirate of Ajman and will be a self-contained, master planned city comprising varied residences, offices, retail, schools, clinics, and leisure facilities, including marines and a number of five-star hotels and resorts," the statement said.

The city's resident and working population will be around 200,000, nearly a quarter of Bahrain or Qatar's population.

"The masterplan is focused on the preservation of the natural environment, which includes 30 species of mangroves, more than 20 species of birds, other wildlife, countless coastal fish, trees and sand dunes," it said.

"The new city will encourage people to leave their cars at home with an integrated network of walkways, canals, waterways, bicycle paths and public transport facilities. Residential buildings will make up 52 per cent, offices 22 per cent, retail stores 11 per cent, hotels eight per cent, with warehousing, storage and infrastructure making up the remaining seven per cent."