Bahrain demonstrated the sheer investment potential of its real estate sector at the 16th Cityscape Global, with projects worth more than USD 11 billion.
Held at Dubai World Trade Centre on 11th-13th September, this was the perfect venue for the Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB) and its development partners: Cityscape is the Middle East’s largest real estate exhibition for investors, developers, architects, designers and senior executives from all over the world.
And Bahrain didn’t disappoint. Five major projects were on show – Bahrain Bay, Bahrain Marina, Diyar Al Muharraq, Canal View and Durrat Al Bahrain.
Proving the potential
Real estate in Bahrain is expanding substantially through population growth, higher disposable income and interest from GCC countries, especially Saudi Arabia.
Demand is increasing in residential, retail and hospitality, and is being boosted by rising tourist numbers and rising gaps in the availability of affordable housing.
The sector is becoming increasingly vital to Bahrain’s economy: in 2016 real estate and business activities contributed 3.9% real GDP. Real estate transactions grew by 15.2% in the first quarter of 2017, with YoY sector growth reaching 4.5% in the same period – to the tune of USD 1.7 billion.
Why Bahrain is so attractive
Bahrain provides four principal reasons to invest in real estate.
Exceptional visitor growth. Tourist numbers are rising significantly, up 14% in the first half of 2017 vs. the same period in 2016, driving demand across the sector. In particular, hotel revenues alone are expected to top USD 1 billion by 2018.
Major investment. Bahrain has a USD 32 billion pipeline of projects in public- and private-sector infrastructure including more than USD 10 billion in tourism projects that will benefit real estate. These include expansion of Bahrain International Airport to handle even greater passenger numbers and fleet modernisation of the Kingdom’s national carrier, Gulf Air – as well as investment in hospitality and retail.
Liberal commerce. The Kingdom is committed to business freedom, so that investors realise maximum value. Bahrain is the only Gulf state in which GCC and non-GCC developers can benefit from 100% foreign ownership. For non-GCC investors, there are allocated investment zones where 100% ownership is allowed. It is also possible to repatriate all capital, profits and dividends.
In addition, Bahrain is implementing ‘soft’ infrastructure, such as smart legislation and new regulations specifically designed to support real estate growth.
Excellent rental yields. Our rental market offers one of the GCC’s highest gross yields, at nearly 7%, giving valuable and stable cashflow.
H.E. Khalid Al Rumaihi, Chief Executive of the EDB, commented on Cityscape Global: “Recent figures demonstrate the resilience of Bahrain’s real estate sector and highlight the increasing demand for housing, not only in the Kingdom but across the wider region. Strong growth in this sector has been supported by the implementation of economic and legislative reform and forward-thinking policies such as the public private partnership model by the Ministry of Housing and the recently issued real estate law.”
|The fabulous five|
Residential, hospitality, retail and FB
A USD 2.5 billion waterfront district covering 45 km2, Bahrain Bay provides vibrant residential, commercial and retail spaces. It is close to important facilities such as the Bahrain World Trade Centre and International Airport.
A waterfront coastal destination in the centre of Manama, Bahrain Marina offers residential, entertainment, leisure and hospitality over 31,000 m2 – and, naturally, an exclusive yacht club.
Diyar Al Muharraq
A progressive urban development on 12 reclaimed islands, Diyar Al Muharraq boasts more than 40 km of waterfront, with residential, hospitality and retail, including the iconic Chinese-themed Dragon City mall.
Residential, seafront and gated communities
This provides fine living next to a 1.6 km canal in the heart of Dilmunia Island health and wellbeing resort. Canal View offers residential, office, retail and hospitality, as well as tranquil private gardens.
Durrat Al Bahrain
Dubbed ‘urban living, island style’, Durrat Al Bahrain sports luxury hospitality, spa resorts, executive apartments and offices. Built on 15 islands and with 60 km of waterfront, it will ultimately be home to 60,000 people.