Abu Dhabi royal scraps Pakistan deal

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Sheikh Nahayan bin Mubarak
Sheikh Nahayan bin Mubarak has confirmed that the US $45 billion Pakistan project is now scrapped.

After less than two weeks of signing of a multi-billion dollar deal, Sheikh Nahayan bin Mubarak al-Nahayan has confirmed that the agreement had been cancelled.

Under the deal, the Abu Dhabi royal had planned to collaborate with a prominent Pakistan businessman and invest around USD 45 billion over 15 years on a real estate project in the country. The plan had envisaged developing grand residential properties on an island, while also constructing the world’s tallest tower came under discussion. However, the much touted deal, which was also regarded as biggest ever foreign investment in Pakistan, has now been cancelled.

The Abu Dhabi Group, chaired by Sheikh Nahayan bin Mubarak al-Nahayan, has not provided any reason for this action. A statement issued by the company states that “It is…unfortunate that discussions between the parties could not reach any conclusion and the Memorandum of Understanding has been cancelled”.

The cancellation of memorandum of understanding is free of any financial obligations as no firm commitments had been assumed by the Abu Dhabi royal, the conglomerate or his privately owned construction firm Dhabi Contracting. The non-binding preliminary agreement was merely an expression of interest to provide Bahria Town Pakistan with technical support and assistance in the project.  It was previously rumored that Dhabi Contracting, a unit of Abu Dhabi Group, had made financial commitments to the real estate project.

Over the last decade, Abu Dhabi Group has made significant investments in Pakistan to benefit from liberal policies in the banking and telecom sectors of the country. The company has made investments in Bank Alfalah Ltd , Warid Telecom, Al Razi Healthcare and Wateen Telecom. The Abu Dhabi Group is known for targeting lucrative investment opportunities in the emerging markets. Its portfolio includes investments in Africa, Morocco and the agribusiness.

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