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“What doom & gloom” you ask? We know

“What doom & gloom” you ask? We know

The question was asked by the chairman of Al Barari, Zaal Mohammed Zaal in an advertisement. Come with us, we’ll show where ‘doom and gloom’ are hiding.

December 23, 2008 1:10 by

A full page advertisement by Al Barari features a quotation by the company’s chairman, Zaal Mohammed Zaal. It reads “What doom & gloom? Standing tall. Steaming ahead. Confident. Well positioned for the next boom!”

Where do we begin? Aside from investors’ lack of confidence in the local property and stock markets, we’ve got some hard facts to show the chairman exactly where “doom and gloom” are hiding.

According to The National, the Dubai Financial Market (DFM) fell a whopping 71 percent in 2008, which makes the DFM the worst performing market in the region, and according to Bloomberg, one of the world’s top 10 worst performing markets.

Stocks fell to their lowest levels on Monday due to a drop in oil prices. The DFM fell by 3.91 percent to 1,732 points yesterday. Local developers led the fall: market leader Emaar Properties’ stocks dropped 4.94 percent; and Union Properties plummeted 8.42 percent.

The latest round of frantic selling has baffled analysts. “There is a fresh round of selling that the market has been experiencing… with a lack of any new news to really explain it,” said Ali Khan, the director of Dubai-based Arqaam Capital, to The National.

That’s where the gloom is. It’s part negative sentiment and part stark reality. As oil prices fall, investors fear Dubai will not be able to finance and sustain the enormous projects it plans to develop.

And although one way of coping with the plummeting market is to improve investor confidence, making statements like “steaming ahead” and “well positioned for the next boom!” don’t cut it anymore. If Al Barari is bucking the current trend and is truly “standing tall,” the company needs to explain why this is the case. Given that mammoth developers such as Emaar are struggling with their plummeting stocks, why is Al Barari any better?

Developers need to bear in mind that investors in Dubai aren’t just more skeptical than they just to be; they’re also smarter and more scrupulous. Therefore, loud declarations that aren’t backed up with hard facts are simply not good enough.

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  1. Anonymous Dubaian on December 24, 2008 6:36 am

    It is interesting how the media is continuously reporting Doom and Gloom as the scenario world over.

    The crisis is a making of the people in it. Yes there are plenty of people who are loosing jobs, there plenty of people who are going to have to move back to their home countries.

    So what? These people will still have something to do. There are lands in Africa that need to be cultivated, there are old people who need their care there are people in Palestine who are still dying. Education is still an issue in so many parts of the world. Let the ones who are unable to live this pampered lifestyle move into some of the simpler lifestyles and life will go on.

    There is enough in this world for everyone, we just have to start sharing.

    I dont understand why you want to pull down the spirits of someone who is keeping positive in these times of difficultly. If we all maintained a similar attitude then there would be no crisis to begin with.

    Lets keep positive and there is a lot to come from it. Mr. Zaal dont worry about what these guys say – you keep going and we are with you.

  2. YT on December 24, 2008 11:51 am

    The truth probably is the that Al Barri is in trouble, they sold Villas at prices I think over 15 Million. If a Plam Island Villa (Newsweek and Kipp report) is not reselling for 3.1 Million then we know what will happen to the 15 Million plus bracket.

    So lets wait for Six Months and we will know exactly if there is DOOM or Gloom.

    The issue is the high end market is probably very vulnerable as most of Dubai real estate addressed only this segment.

    Developers needed to change gears to address the real market and working residents. But its too late now, with world market on the roll down, Dubai is no more insulated.

  3. fadi on January 8, 2009 8:11 am

    The naive ‘Anonymous Dubaiian’ needs to stay anonymous :)

    Or realistic.

    Must be so easy to stay pampered and ask others to dig up wells in Africa.


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