Egyptian minister says land row settlements with Dubai firms to be submitted to gov't
An Egyptian government commission has approved the settlement of disputes with Dubai’s Damac Properties and Al Futtaim Group, according to Fayza Aboulnaga, minister of planning and international cooperation.
The initial agreement will be submitted for government approval in the new week, she told reporters in Cairo.
The deal provides for the two companies to fund the difference between prices they had paid for land in contracts with the previous administration of ousted President Hosni Mubarak and the value deemed fair by the current authorities, she said.
The Egyptian government is trying to settle disputes with companies over contracts signed with the Mubarak administration in out-of-court reconciliations.
Damac had filed an arbitration lawsuit in Washington in May against Egypt after the government seized land purchased in 2006 and sentenced its chairman to five years of hard labour.
A differential payment for land plots in Egypt could amount to a lot of money, taking the example of Prince Waleed's agricultural land on the Nile Delta, didn't he give over 70 per cent of it back to the Egyptian Government. Many of the new era Egyptians you talk to, believe that these land plots were obtained for about a third of the price had they gone to public auction with a reserve price following the rightful procedure under Egyptian Law.
Also I believe in DAMAC's case there was a $43 million fine, perhaps that will evolve into the extra payment. Also I wonder whether they'll remove the 'hard labour' sentence or partially reduce it?