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Sun 4 Oct 2009 09:44 AM

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Damac remains upbeat for Cityscape despite crisis

Property giant says it is committed to delivering 25 towers by end of 2011.

Damac Properties said on Sunday it would use Cityscape Dubai to tell its customers that it was still committed to delivering 25 projects by the end of 2011 despite the global downturn.

The Dubai developer said it would focus on construction and delivery at the property show which starts on Monday.

Despite a turbulent 12 months, the company said it was confident that it could "show investors and end users that it has continued to make solid progress on all fronts".

Since last year's event Damac Properties has handed over three projects - The Crescent, Executive Heights and Lake View, it added.

A total of seven contracts have been awarded since May with at least four more to be confirmed before the end of 2009.

Hussain Sajwani, chairman of Damac Properties, said: "It is important for us to come to Cityscape and demonstrate to people that we have continued to move forward and that in spite of some severe challenges that we are focused and committed to construction and delivery."

He added: "We have had to make some tough business decisions and learned some harsh lessons in the last year but we have taken all these steps with a view towards ensuring that the company can move forward."

He said that while the company had reviewed its construction plans, it had not cancelled any projects in Dubai.

Sajwani credited the progress made by Damac on initiatives such as the company's Recovery Programme - where customers were offered the chance to switch their investment in an off plan development to one that was almost ready or well under construction as being pivotal to this.

"It was very important that we adapted to this rapidly changing market place and this meant looking at the changing circumstances of our customers as well," he said.

Sajwani added that whilst he believed the eyes of the world would be on Cityscape in 2009, it was important to "look forward and not focus on an era of rapid real estate growth that had gone forever".

He said: "This has not been an easy year for any developer but I feel happy in what we have still achieved in delivering units to customers and planning for the future in a coordinated and effective manner. We are continuing to award contracts for new developments and we are working closely with our contractors on site to meet deadlines and deliver our promise of 25 towers by the end of 2011."

Currently Damac Properties has 11,313 units under construction and has delivered 3,029. By the end of next year the company is expected to hand over a further 7,100 units across the GCC region.