Dubai Ruler Sheikh Mohammed Approves DIFC Expansion Bid

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Dubai: His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid has reaffirmed Dubai‘s mission to be a major economic force in the Middle East after he approved the latest phase of an ambitious expansion project for DIFC that will see the financial district triple in size.

The Vice President and Ruler of Dubai said that accelerating the growth of the emirate’s financial sector is vital to efforts to drive forward the economy.

Sheikh Mohammed said the development of DIFC (Dubai International Financial Centre) is in line with the lofty vision for Dubai, outlined in his 50-Year Charter for the future of the emirate.

The charter has been launched as Sheikh Mohammed celebrates his own 50 years of service to the UAE government.

Sheikh Mohammed highlighted the key role of DIFC in supporting the emirate’s position as a business capital and magnet for international investment.

“The financial sector remains one of the cornerstones of our economy,” said Sheikh Mohammed.

“We are keen that the development of infrastructure is matched by the development of legislation by continuously reviewing it to ensure it is among the best in the world and that it can facilitate the best environment for supporting greater excellence and achievement.”

Sheikh Mohammed hailed the financial district as he gave the go-ahead to his latest chapter in its success story, DIFC 2.0.

DIFC’s phased growth plan will triple the scale of the leading financial hub in the region.

The Dubai ruler made the announcement alongside a host of dignitaries, including the Crown Prince of Dubai, Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed.

The governor of DIFC, Essa Kazim, outlined details of the expansion bid during Sheikh Mohammed’s visit, which will include an extra 13 million square feet of space being added to the complex.

Work on DIFC 2.0 will start immediately and will be completed in several stages.

Once finalised, the revamped district will boast 6.4 million square feet of office space, 2.6 million square feet of creative space, 1.5 million square feet of residences, 1.3 million square feet of retail space and 700,000 square feet devoted to leisure and entertainment.

This will be complemented by a financial campus covering approximately 400,000 square feet, an additional 250,000 square feet of hospitality offerings, and 3.5 million square feet of car parking space.

“Under the wise leadership of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai’s government continues to undertake unparalleled initiatives to drive the emirate’s future and to support Dubai’s role as an essential component of the global financial system,” aid DIFC governor Essa Kazim.

“The launch of DIFC 2.0 embodies the eight defining principles upon which Dubai was founded and included in His Highness’ 50-year charter, whilst supporting the government’s efforts to foster an environment in Dubai where innovation and entrepreneurship can thrive.”

DIFC is already home to more than 22,000 professionals working across over 2,000 companies in the district, including some of the leading regional and global players in the financial services industry.

SOURCE: THE NATIONAL

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