Dubai free zone now open for real estate investment trust

Gulfnews, August 14 – Real estate investment trusts, which use pooled investors funds to buy and manage property, can now operate from Dubais financial free zone, the zones regulator said yesterday.

The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) said in a statement that rules permitting the operation of real estate investment trusts (REITS) within the DIFC were introduced on August 6, 2006. They follow the approval of the Investment Trust Law on August 1.

A REITS is a corporation or a trust that uses the pooled capital of many investors to purchase and manage property. REITs are traded on exchanges like stocks and offer several benefits over actually owning properties. They are highly liquid unlike real estate, and enable sharing in non-residential properties as well.

"In many of the worlds major capital markets, REITS have become the most favoured method for attracting public ownership in property investments," said DFSA Chief Executive David Knott.

The new rules will enable the floating of REITS for the first time in this region, using the facilities of the Dubai International Financial Exchange.