Dubai FDI wins UN recognition for best practices


Picture used for illustrative purposes.

The Dubai Investment Development Agency (Dubai FDI) at the Department of Economy and Tourism (DET) gained international recognition for its successful efforts in capturing FDI trends and patterns toward positioning the city as a global investment destination.

The ‘Dubai FDI Monitor’ open data initiative was recently recognised as a best practice among investment promotion agencies (IPAs) for monitoring and evaluation by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP).

The first city-level FDI monitoring and reporting system in the world, Dubai FDI Monitor tracks and records five different types of FDI in real-time, including greenfield FDI and new forms of investments using advanced methodology and smart features.

The UNESCAP featured Dubai FDI Monitor in its Handbook on Policies, Promotion, and the Facilitation of Foreign Direct Investment for Sustainable Development in Asia and the Pacific, which highlights FDI best practices and case studies on FDI attraction, promotion and facilitation. For Dubai FDI, the recognition comes within months of announcing its annual results and rankings, where Dubai achieved the top spot in the world in attracting FDI in 2021, surpassing London and Singapore for the first time.

“Dubai’s remarkable FDI performance and global recognition are a testament to its efficiency, resilience, stability and sustainability. Under the guidance of the wise leadership, the emirate has emerged as a role model for global best practices in attracting FDI and providing promotional services and facilitation. This esteemed recognition for the UNESCAP consolidates Dubai’s ambitious journey towards nurturing close cooperation with global investors and partnerships with FDI source countries,” said Fahad Al Gergawi, CEO of Dubai FDI.

Dubai FDI is the first IPA in the world to publish real-time FDI data using innovative and cost-effective techniques to promote Dubai. Dubai FDI Monitor enables Dubai FDI to provide investors with timely and accurate FDI data and analytics as well as clarity on the investment environment to support effective and fact-based decision-making. Investors can leverage the open data platform to assess Dubai’s competitiveness as an investment destination and identify promising and emerging sectors.

Meanwhile, SmartCrowd, a UAE-based digital real estate crowdfunding platform, has introduced the MENA region’s first-ever secondary sales market, allowing investors to buy and sell their property shares securely.

 A much-anticipated addition to the SmartCrowd platform, the aim of the secondary market is to provide more liquidity to investors who wish to exit property investments early, as well as give investors the chance to purchase shares from other investors in high-performing properties.

Siddiq Farid, CEO and Co-Founder of SmartCrowd, said: “What’s both exciting and important for us is that not only have we enabled people to make micro-investments, but investors can now realize their gains on the secondary market. In fact, all sellers on the secondary market were able to sell some of their shares listed.

“Overall, the success of our secondary market shows that those in need of liquidity can access their funds more readily, while investors looking to increase their exposure are able to buy shares in a convenient, transparent manner. Our secondary market structure offers investors more control, allowing them to manage their portfolio and plan their exits more appropriately. More importantly, it’s never been done before in the region, so being the first ones to make this possible is a major milestone for our organization. We fundamentally believe this is the future of real estate investing and encourage everyone to become part of the SmartCrowd community.”

After rigorous testing to ensure the best possible experience for its users, the secondary market, set to be operational twice a year, was launched in August 2022. Sellers realized an average total return of 21.1% comprising both rental income and capital gains from their exits. Buyers also took full advantage of this opportunity, outnumbering sellers 2.3 times over.

 Mitesh Modi, a SmartCrowd investor who participated in the secondary market, said: “Buying and selling properties is now easier than ever before. The secondary market provides a unique opportunity to buy or sell property shares.

 One can book the capital gains or liquidate them should one want to invest in other properties. It’s user-friendly, transparent, and as easy as trading stocks. SmartCrowd truly empowers investors to be a part of the real estate growth journey in the region.”


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