x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

DMCC to fund world's tallest office tower with sukuk

Dubai will finance the world's tallest office tower with Islamic debt as the Arabian Gulf business hub steps up sukuk sales amid plans to create a global centre for the industry.

Ahmed bin Sulayem, the chairman of Dubai Multi Commodities Centre, is targeting Islamic funding for the tower. Antonie Robertson / The National
Ahmed bin Sulayem, the chairman of Dubai Multi Commodities Centre, is targeting Islamic funding for the tower. Antonie Robertson / The National

Dubai will finance the world's tallest office tower with Islamic debt as the Arabian Gulf business hub steps up sukuk sales amid plans to create a global centre for the industry.

Dubai Multi Commodities Centre will draw on a mix of funding, including Sharia-compliant bonds, to pay for the skyscraper, which will stand at least 520 metres tall and cost about US$1 billion, DMCC chairman Ahmed bin Sulayem said in an interview on July 24. "When we go with something, we would like it to be Islamic."

Dubai said in January it wants to make Islamic finance a "core industry'' amid forecasts by Standard & Poor's that global Islamic assets will double to as much as $3 trillion by 2015. Sukuk sales by Dubai issuers including the state utility and Emirates airline, accounted for 35 per cent of total offerings in the Gulf Cooperation Council this year, up from 26 per cent in the same period in 2012, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

The emirate's borrowing costs dropped two times more than the global average for sovereign sukuk since reaching a record on June 26.

The commercial skyscraper will join Dubai's skyline in about five years, according to Mr bin Sulayem. Dubai is already home to the Burj Khalifa, the tallest mixed-use tower in the world at a height of 828 metres.

 

* Bloomberg News