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Dubai property to slow on global credit crisis

Profits in Dubai's buoyant property sector could ease and sales slow as buyers become more selective.

Profits in Dubai's buoyant property sector could ease and sales slow as buyers become more selective in the wake of the global credit crisis, the Dubai Land Department chief said in remarks published today. "The correction in profit levels will not be felt across Dubai as it will be limited to some areas only," Sultan Butti bin Mijrin told a local newspaper. "The outlook for the sector remains positive with registered property sales so far this year reaching 200 billion dirhams" he added.

In stark contrast to the United States and Europe, where the subprime mortgage crisis has already hit the property sector, Gulf property markets continue to boom on the back of high oil prices. The property market in the UAE, the world's fifth largest oil exporter, has been growing rapidly, pushing up property and rental prices, driving soaring inflation and raising fears that the sector is overheating.

Mr Mijrin's comments come in the wake of a raft of reports predicting slower UAE property growth. Credit Suisse said this week that the global market turmoil and the negative sentiment on the future of the property market in Dubai could lead to a slowdown in the region's property sales and would also hurt demand in Abu Dhabi. * Reuters

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