Saudi Emaar to get $1.3bn govt loan
Jeddah, January 31, 2010
Saudi developer Emaar Economic City, an affiliate of Dubai's Emaar Properties, will receive a long-term loan of around 5 billion Saudi riyals ($1.33 billion) from the Ministry of Finance, a source close to the deal said.
The firm, which is developing the King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC) project on the Red Sea coast, has faced delays in the execution of some of its projects.
"The funds will be used to speed up the development of the city," the source said.
Officials at Saudi Emaar were not immediately available for comment. Emaar spokespeople did not immediately return requests for comment.
KAEC is the most prominent among a series of "economic cities" that Saudi Arabia is planning in order to diversify the country's economy away from oil and gas, as well as to provide jobs for the country's growing population of around 25 million.
Emaar Economic City has faced delays in delivering some housing and business units, as well as a delay on the first phase of the city's port, which it expects to complete in 2012 after signing a 4 billion riyal ($1.07 billion) joint venture last year with Saudi Binladin Group to finance, develop, and operate the port.
Emaar Economic City headquarters have already shifted a large number of its staff to the KAEC and have handed over some residential and commercial units by the end of last year and some plots in the industrial valley. - Reuters