Dubai Faces a ‘Disaster’ From Overbuilding, Top Developer Says
Dubai needs to halt all new home construction for one or two years to avert an economic disaster brought on by continued oversupply, according to one of its biggest builders.
“We’re entering a crossroads now,” Damac Properties PJSC Chairman Hussain Sajwani said in a Bloomberg interview. “Either we fix this problem and we can grow from here or we are going to see a disaster.”
Damac’s chairman is the latest executive to call for curbs on construction in a market that’s been on a downward trajectory since it peaked five years ago. The slump has defied all predictions of a rebound as house prices fell around 30%. About 30,000 new homes will be built this year, twice the demand in the Gulf city, property broker JLL estimates.
Damac has dramatically reduced new sales in the past two years and will focus on selling the properties in its inventory, Sajwani said. Still, the developer will complete 4,000 homes this year and another 6,000 in 2020.
“All we need is just to freeze the supply,” Sajwani said. “Reduce it for a year, maybe 18 months, maybe 2 years,” he said.