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Dubai’s DIFC registrations up in H1; US, European firms boost

The Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), the United Arab Emirates' finance and business hub, said 64 companies joined in the first half of 2011, boosted by registrations from European and North American firms, the authority said on Monday.

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July 25, 2011 2:39 by



The number of registered companies operating in the centre reached 813 by the end of June, including 312 regulated and 409 non-regulated companies, and 92 retailers, the DIFC said in a statement.

The firm running Dubai’s financial free zone said it continued to grow despite regional unrest and a continued global economic downturn.

“The outlook for economic growth in the region continues to be strong due to the long-term fundamentals, particularly its abundance of natural resources and youthful populations, as well as the benefits of economic integration through the GCC Common Market and larger Free Trade Area,” said Abdulla Mohammed al-Awar, CEO of DIFC Authority.

Dubai has so far escaped the regional unrest that began in December.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) expects Dubai’s economy to expand by 2.8 percent this year up from 0.5 percent in 2010.

The DIFC, launched in 2004, is a financial free zone home to 800 active registered firms, including 18 of the top 25 global banks, global asset managers, insurers and law firms.

The authority said it continued to see interest from the Americas, Europe and Middle East and increased interest from Asia.

Around 44 percent of new regulated companies joining in the first half of 2011 came from the Middle East and Asia and 50 percent from Europe and North America, it said.

One of the seven United Arab Emirates, the OPEC producer’s trade and business hub Dubai is recovering from last year’s $25 billion debt restructuring in its flagship company, Dubai World , after its 2009 standstill sent global markets reeling. (Reporting by Martina Fuchs)



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