Bukhatir Group will pursue its mega project of the Sports City in the “Berges du Lac.” The announcement was made by the Group President, Mohamed Abdel Rahman Bukhatir, in an interview with African Manager, reiterating the UAE’s willingness to contribute to the realization of investment projects in Tunisia and to strengthen bilateral cooperation, especially in light of the climate of trust in relations between the two countries.
The Group President, speaking on the sidelines of the Tunisian-UAE Partnership and Investment meeting held on Wednesday in the House of the exporter said that “we are willing to invest more in Tunisia where the environment is good and supportive, and we have no obstacle to ensure the success of our projects and expand our partnership with the Tunisian businessmen. This is a good opportunity to strengthen the socio-economic relations. ”
He added that the Group will continue its investment and its presence in Tunisia after a cessation which he attributed to global economic conditions and especially after the meeting held in recent weeks between the prime ministers of both countries and following the studies conducted on the Group’s projects in Tunisia.
Works of the Sports City mega project started in recent months, with land development. The Group expressed, during the meeting, its confidence about the progress of these works, as well as the deadlines for their completion and marketing.
The Tunis Sports City project is one of the mega-projects to be carried out over the next years in Tunis, which should accelerate the momentum of the Tunisian economy through the creation of new jobs.
Total investment for this project is estimated at nearly $ 5 billion, which will be disbursed by the UAE Group to build one of the greatest sports cities in the region, in an area of nearly 257 hectares in the “Berges du Lac.”
The company said it had launched a few months ago a large campaign for recruitment of Tunisian executives and labor for the realization of its project whose plan provides, inter alia, for the creation of nine sports academies, three golf clubs, a shopping complex and nearly 10,000 residential units. The project should create about 40,000 new jobs.
This new dynamic of partnership between Tunisia and UAE was highlighted by Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi, Minister of Foreign Trade of the UAE who said that her country’s investments in Tunisia have indeed recorded a real progress during this year, recalling that UAE companies had won in 2006 the trophy of the first foreign investor in Tunisia.
“We are the largest investor in Tunisia, where our investments are approaching the 30% mark in terms of growth to reach a total volume of 3,020.9 million Tunisian dinars.”
As for investment in the tourism sector, she cited, for example, the company “Emirates Emaar Properties,” which was entrusted with the mega tourist resort of Hergla and which is one of the largest property developers in Gulf countries. It is initiated by the first property developer of the world and is estimated at 2.54 billion dinars.
In fact, “Marina Al Qoussour of Hergla” is a project stretching over 442 hectares with over 4,000 residential sites with villas, houses and apartments on the banks of the lake, beach, marina and dockside.
Regarding real estate, she indicated that the real estate company “Dubai Holding” will invest 18 billion dinars in the construction of a new city in the southern lake of Tunis. It stretches over an area of 830 hectares and is designed to reconcile the capital with its coastline, particularly through the creation of a marina, and make it an international platform for business, services and leisure.
Thanks to its importance and its economic and social impacts, this mega-size is a lever for the Tunisian economy.
The UAE minister said Investment of Sama Dubai will generate an average flow of 1.2 billion dinars per year over 15 years, i.e. more than the average of 940 million dinars per year between 2002 and 2005 in foreign investment.
According to her, “Sama Dubai” will complete the project according to the master plan and the schedules set by the State. The project is also funded with 90% in loans denominated in foreign currencies.
As to Mr. Mehdi Houas, Minister of Trade and Tourism, he praised the brotherly relations between the two countries and reviewed the efforts of Tunisia to meet the challenges, internally and externally, to ensure the success of the democratic process and achieve the goals of the Revolution.
On his part, Jalloul Ayed, the Finance Minister called on Emirati businessmen to seize the opportunities offered by Tunisia in various economic sectors, as a platform for regional business, providing access to European markets.
He announced at the partnership meeting, in the presence of more than 40 UAE businessmen, the launch of new investment mechanisms.
He also outlined the various benefits available to Tunisia and which are “likely to enable it to ensure its successful transition to democracy.”
For her part, Wided Bouchamoui, President of UTICA, said that the Revolution of January 14, by cleaning up the business environment, will, with no doubt, provide more flexibility to businesses in this process.
Finally, she noted that world economies cannot take off in the absence of an appropriate healthy and stable environment, indicating that companies are called today to face real challenges and play an important role but within a framework of shared responsibilities.