A Quarterly Newsletter from the UAE and Oman member firms of the PKF International Ltd.

VOL 13, Issue 3 July 2011

From the Managing Partner - U.A.E.

Recent international news reports are again raising the spectre of a “double dip” recession – figures coming out of the US do not make good reading and Europe, with Greece in particular, not in good shape. All this is after things seemed to be looking up. Will it be a matter of America (or Europe) sneezing and the rest of us catching a cold? Not so far in the UAE which is continuing to move along – the recent Emirates bond issue and the planned Dubai bond issue seem to indicate renewed confidence and the just announced opening up of the utilities sector IWPP programmes should bring in further infrastructural development in a sector often experiencing shortages.

I have read with interest the studying of a development of the residence visa for property owners and a linking to free zone companies, effectively utilising the free zone structures to provide residence. At present only Jebel Ali Offshore companies are permitted to own properties and they do not provide a visa. So it will be interesting to see how the free zone rules may be amended to bring in property ownership and what impact this has on the real estate sector.

We are more than pleased to feature an interview with Mr. Buti Saeed Al Ghandi, Managing Director of Al Ghandi Investment Company and a leading figure in local circles who is so representative of the entrepreneurial spirit of the UAE. Mr Al Ghandi shares his views on various topical matters.

Continuing with our industry analyses, in this edition we feature an analysis by our consultant on the paint industry in the UAE and the direction in which it is headed.

We also have our usual updates from the Oman member firm and the Offshore Department.

Please feel free to write to update@pkfuae.com if you would like to express an opinion on any matter inside.