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Sat 15 Nov 2014 05:41 PM

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Dubai World close to agreeing deal to extend $10.5bn debt settlement

Deal will allow Dubai World to raise more capital to further its development plans

Dubai World close to agreeing deal to extend $10.5bn debt settlement

Dubai World, one of the emirate's big state-owned conglomerates, is close to finalising a deal that will extend the debt repayments on a $10.5 billion worth of loans until 2022, according to reports.

Quoting an unnamed adviser to Dubai World, The National newspaper reports that the deal will allow Dubai World to raise more capital to further its development plans.

“A deal is very close. There are around 100 banks involved so the process of signing them all up might take some time, but it’s likely a deal will be confirmed this year,” the adviser was quoted as saying in The National report.

The news comes just days after the sale of Jebel Ali free zone company to DP World for $2.6 billion. The purchase of Economic Zones World, currently owned by Port and Free Zone World, includes the assumption of net debt of $859 million.

The advisor told The National that the deal kept the assets in Dubai.

“They [Dubai World] have got through the hardest part of the asset disposal plan, without selling ownership of any strategic assets – like Jafza – outside Dubai. The crown jewels are still intact,” the adviser added.

The deal will also help Dubai World to make its first scheduled repayment under the restructuring plan - $4.4 billion due in May 2015 - ahead of schedule.

Earlier this year, Dubai World made its second early repayment worth around $300 million under its $25 billion debt restructuring plan. The payment - made at the end of June - came from the proceeds of asset sales completed by the firm and follows an initial sum of $284.5 million returned in March to creditors, which include dozens of local and international lenders.

Dubai World ran into trouble during the emirate's 2009 property market collapse, forcing it into one of the Middle East's largest-ever debt restructurings.

Its fortunes have begun to rebound in line with the wider Dubai economy, which has seen key industries like tourism and logistics boom and real estate prices recover from their nadir.

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Simon 5 years ago

So....in essence...an in ability to repay its debt...which would force a formal 'default'...but instead...a rescheduled loan repayment period.

Just one question...where's this booming recovery everyone keeps talking about? If you can not service your debts from 5-6yrs ago...how are you able to take on new debt...and service that?

Nothing has changed is the reality. This boom like the last is based on leveraged debt and the investment from international investors. You may as well say its been done on a 'credit card' and its now maxed out.

How do you pay off old debt? With new debt!...hoping a positive change in circustances will allow you to repay new and old debt at the same time. Granted, there has been a money flow into Dubai...but...how long can that go on for before your repayments exceed your new income again.

Economics and debt, in a nutshell, is as simple as that.

whatever 5 years ago

Yes indeed Simon.
Meanwhile, in the real world, people on maxed out credit cards are chased by authorities and worse to make payments.
And woe betide anyone that misses one.