By Claire Ferris-Lay
Organisers of 'world's biggest B2B real estate event' confident amid slew of bad news.
Cityscape Dubai, which bills itself as the largest business-to-business real estate investment and development event in the world, is confident of success despite the dark clouds of global economic gloom and negative forecasts for the Dubai property market, organisers said on Sunday.
"Now, as the world faces up to market uncertainty, we enter a new era in which Middle East developers are expected to maintain and even increase their presence throughout the world," Rohan Marwaha, managing director of Cityscape, said ahead of the Monday opening.
"The sheer scale and intensity of the iconic projects in one of the most impressive property booms in modern history has kept the UAE, and Dubai in particular, in the headlines worldwide for the best part of a decade," he added.
But a day of bad news ahead of the opening of the seventh Cityscape Dubai underlined the challenges that the sector now faces.
A report by property consultants Colliers International published on Sunday said that Dubai property prices are expected to remain flat until 2010, thus marking the end of a remarkable six-year boom.
The report was the latest in a number of reports which suggest the Dubai market in due for a 10 to 20 percent correction, as supply outstrips demand.
Meanwhile on the stock market, shares in Dubai's biggest publicly quoted developer Emaar fell another 12 percent on Sunday as investors ditched the former star performer.
Cityscape Dubai, however, is confident that turnout will be high to see the 1,000-odd exhibitors over 75,000 square metres.
Among the speakers on Cityscape Dubai's opening day a former London mayor, Ken Livingstone and British writer and broadcaster Jonathan Dimbleby. Organisers say the four-day event, which takes place at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, is expected to attract record numbers.
Conferences across the event will include the Real Estate Leadership Strategy Summit, The International Real Estate Investment and Development Conference and The World Architecture Congress.
And as a pre-exhibition booster, Dubai-owned deveopler Nakheel announced on Sunday plans to build a tower over one kilometre high as part of a new $38 billion project, maintining the emirate's reputation for lofty ambitions.
After the failure on lake district - International city how could anyone trust in Nakheel?