European investors in talks over a Dubai Sport City project

Developers MED say the development is underway and has not stalled.
DUBAI PROJECT: The Kensington Royale Project in Dubai Sports City.
By Shane McGinley
Sun 22 Aug 2010 11:42 AM

European investors in a project located in Dubai Sports City have hired a Dublin-based lawyer to represent them in a dispute over delays in construction of the development.

Over 60 investors from around eight European countries have hired Anthony Joyce from the Dubai-based firm Anthony Joyce and Co, to represent them in discussions with developers Middle East Development LLC (MED) over progress at the Kensington Royale Project in Dubai Sports City.

Joyce told Arabian Business that discussions with MED were “in the initial phases” and “it is down to the fact that [investors] entered into contracts and the time has passed as to when this development should have been completed, well passed, and now they are being asked to continue to pay money into this development when the clients I am acting for don’t feel there is any prospect of completing.”

A spokesperson from MED confirmed that the developer had been in contact with Joyce but denied the project has stalled.

“I have had only one phone conversation with Anthony Joyce in which he told me that he was acting on behalf of certain investors based in Ireland. It was a friendly conversation and I updated Mr Joyce as to the progress and I told him that as with our other clients, we stand ready to address any concerns that they may have,” Hasham S. Gangii, an advisor to MED, and closely involved in the Kensington Royale Project, told Arabian Business.

The investors told the Dublin-based Sunday Business Post newspaper that the apartments had been bought through a number of worldwide agents in 2006 and 2007, with prices ranging from €168,000 ($213,528) to €280,000 ($355,880). The 252 unit development was originally scheduled for completion last year.

Joyce told the newspaper he was awaiting direction from his clients as to whether they want “to enter into further negotiations with the developers or seek their money back, which would involve instituting proceedings in Dubai against MED.”

However, Gangii reiterated that the project was underway and had a dedicated escrow account in place.

“The construction of the Kensington Royale Project is well underway and we have completed two underground parking levels, the ground floor and are currently working on the core of the second and third floors and the pouring of the first floor slab.

“The project is registered with the Real Estate Regulatory Agency and the Land Department. The units are registered in the interim register (“Oqood”) in compliance with applicable laws. The project also has a dedicated escrow account in compliance with applicable law. Purchasers pay instalments for units purchased based on construction milestones: i.e. payment by a purchaser is only made if there is progress by us,” he said in a statement.

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