Riad Kamal, Chief Executive of ArabtecProperty contractors in Dubai are still owed billions from developers, many of them state linked, and are demanding some kind of assurance that they will be paid soon.
Payments are way behind schedule and they claim that they have no idea when money will reach their accounts.
The UAE’s largest contractor Arabtec, confirmed that it is owned £542 million and 80% of outstanding payments are due from government-linked entities. It now wants an urgent meeting with officials to discuss the overdue amounts.
The firm’s chief executive Riad Kamal said that Arabtec was hoping to meet government officials later this week to discuss the situation and while he is confident that the money will be paid eventually the economic outlook means it is needed for other projects.
‘We feel quite secure the money is going to come eventually. It’s a question of if it’s going to come in good time to be able to sustain the outlook and commitments that we have with our suppliers and sub-contractors,’ Kamal said.
But in the meantime Arabtec is aiming to build up business outside the UAE. It has begun working in Saudi Arabia and is also looking at Libya and Algeria. In Saudi the firm recently started work on its first project, a £266 million university in Riyadh. It has two further potential contracts in the kingdom.