x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Growing number of global firms choose Dubai's DIFC as UAE base

The number of active companies in Dubai International Financial Centre rose 6 per cent in the first half of the year as more global firms flocked to the free zone.

The Dubai International Financial Centre, DIFC.
The Dubai International Financial Centre, DIFC.

The number of active companies in Dubai International Financial Centre rose 6 per cent in the first half of the year as more global firms flocked to the free zone.

Companies from North America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East all showed interest in setting up, DIFC said in a release today.

A total of 899 active registered companies had a presence in DIFC during the period, up from 848 during the first half of last year.

It also issued 90 commercial licences during the period, a 41 per cent rise from the same period of last year. A total of 39 licences were withdrawn as companies exited DIFC.

Of the 90 new commercial licences, nine were regulated companies.

Coutts and Company, the UK private banking house; Swiss Re Corporate Solutions, the Swiss insurance firm; and NBAD Investment Management, the investment arm of National Bank of Abu Dhabi launched operations. Also starting were ICAP Securities, the UK-based dealer broker; CIMD, the Spanish finance and energy consultancy, and Stonehage Trust, the Jersey-based wealth management firm.

Demand for office space also rose during the first half of the year. Occupancy of DIFC-owned commercial offices in the Gate District rose to 98 per cent of leasable space, up from 95 per cent in the first half of last year.

 

tarnold@thenational.ae