x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Dubai dream-team to take on financial crisis

Dubai has set up a nine-man committee to tackle the global financial crisis, reporting directly to the Ruler.

DUBAI // Dubai has set up a nine-man committee to tackle the global financial crisis. The advisory council reports directly to Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. Its mandate is to assess and review Dubai government finances, the property and banking sectors and equity markets. It will also look to encourage further central bank action to ensure banks and companies have access to sufficient liquidity. The committee is made up of key business and political figures including the heads of the top three property firms and the sovereign wealth fund, the chief of both of Dubai's bourses, and federal government representation through the UAE Cabinet Affairs Minister and the vice-chairman of the central bank. The advisory council MOHAMMED ALI ALABBAR ? chairman, Emaar Properties The face and voice of Dubai in the early days of the boom, Mohammed Ali Alabbar has spent much of the last three years quietly building up a regional property empire, overseeing the construction of the world's tallest tower and biggest malls and battling shareholder discontent. The finance and business graduate has been brought in to chair the new advisory council and will be its spokesman. Mr Alabbar is also the director-general of the Dubai Department of Economic Development. NASSER BIN HASSAN AL SHAIKH, Director-General of the Dubai Department of Finance, chairman of Amlak Finance and Deyaar Like Mr Alabbar, Mr Shaikh has been pushed into the limelight over the last few weeks after returning to a position similar to one he held previously as head of Dubai's Department of Finance. In charge of Dubai's sovereign debt, the calm and measured Mr Shaikh has also been leading the merger between Amlak and fellow mortgage lender Tamweel. MOHAMMED ABDULLAH AL GERGAWI, UAE Minister of Cabinet Affairs, chairman of Dubai Holding One of Sheikh Mohammed's closest aides, Mr Gergawi's role will also be to link any Dubai action with federal action in his capacity as minister of state for cabinet affairs. He is chairman of the Executive Office, a top government body led by the ruler, and is chief executive of the ruler's private company Dubai Holding, which is an investor in Sony and EADS. Its real estate arm Dubai Properties is one of the emirate's leading three developers. ESSA KAZIM ? chairman of Bourse Dubai and the Dubai Financial Market Mr Kazim was director-general of the Dubai Financial Market (DFM) from 1999 to 2006 before assuming the role of chairman and taking a more hands-on approach to the development of the Dubai International Financial Exchange (DIFX). His membership gains further importance given the DFM falling almost 70 per cent this year. Mr Kazim has also overseen the sale of a 33 per cent stake in DIFX to NASDAQ OMX and last week its rebranding into the NASDAQ Dubai. MOHAMMED AL SHAIBANI, Director-General of Dubai Ruler's Court, chief executive of Dubai's sovereign wealth fund Investment Corporation of Dubai. Widely-deemed to be the man behind the scenes, Mr Shaibani wears many hats. He has come into greater prominence over the last year taking on new positions such as chairman of Dubai Islamic Bank, leading the emirate's anti-corruption drive and assessing the emirate's key entities. He heads up the ruler's court and is chief executive of its sovereign wealth fund. He also sits on the board of Emaar. OMAR BIN SULAIMAN, Governor of the Dubai International Financial Centre and vice-chairman of the UAE Central Bank As governor of the Dubai International Financial Centre, Mr Sulaiman's mandate is to convince the world the Middle East's Canary Wharf can compete on a global stage and become the bridge between east and west. Among his many roles, he is also chairman of DIFC Investments, which holds a 2.2 per cent stake in Deutsche Bank. He was recently appointed to the board of the UAE central bank as vice-chairman. SULTAN BIN SULAYEM ? Chairman of Dubai World Since the onset of Dubai's construction boom in 2002, Mr Sulayem has filled the pages of the international media with some of Dubai's most glamorous and ambitious projects. From three man-made palm-shaped islands to a map of the world reclaimed from sea and now plans for a kilometre-high tower, Mr Sulayem has made his name in property through Nakheel. His mandate as chairman of Dubai World also covers the world's fourth-largest port operator DP World. ABDUL AZIZ AL MUHAIRI ? Managing Director of the Investment Corporation of Dubai Mr Muhairi joined Dubai's sovereign wealth fund after stepping down from his position as chief executive of Dubai Bank in May. With a bachelor of science degree, Mr Muhairi was one of the architects in converting Dubai Bank into an Islamic bank and paving the way for it to become one of the world's largest Islamic financial institutions within five years. MARWAN BIN GHALITA ? Chief executive of the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA) An engineering graduate from California State University, Mr Ghalita has spent the bulk of his career at the Dubai Land Department. Mr Ghalita holds the keys to Dubai's real estate sector after being handed the top job of regulating the industry and clamping down on malpractice in 2007. Since RERA's creation, Mr Ghalita has overseen a new mortgage law, the introduction of Escrow and the end of property flipping. *Reuters