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Kuwait property sales more than double in Q2

Residential property sales up 144 pct.

July 29, 2010 2:17 by

Kuwaiti real estate sales soared 113 percent in the second-quarter compared to the year earlier period signaling a recovery in the sector, official data showed on Thursday.

Property sales in the Gulf Arab state rose to 596.87 million dinars ($2.07 billion) from 280.8 million dinars in the second quarter last year, the data showed.

“Activity through most of 2009 was unusually weak. But at their current levels, sales volumes are well above the average of 608 (transactions) per month seen during the pre-crisis era between 2003 and 2008,” National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) said in a research note this week.

Residential property deals, which represent the biggest proportion of total real estate transactions, went up 144.5 percent in the quarter to 349.2 million dinars.

Property sales, especially for residential units, have been falling since state-restricted private firms were barred by the government from residential real estate deals last year.

Investment property sales rose 127 percent to 229.8 million dinars, while commercial property sales were down 41 percent in the second quarter of 2010 to 18 million, compared to the year earlier period.

Commercial property in Kuwait typically refers to apartment buildings meant for leasing, mainly to foreigners.

(Reporting by Kuwait newsroom; Editing by Dinesh Nair)

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