In lieu to the country’s 42nd National Day and Dubai’s success in winning to host the Expo 2020, His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al-Nhayan, president of the United Arab Emirates announced that an additional $5.5 billion (20 billion dirhams) will be added to fund approved development projects. This includes the construction of the 10,000 new houses for UAE citizens.
His Highness said on his speech that he decided to nearly double the funds allocated to the housing of UAE citizens. Quoted on state news agency WAM, “We have decided to allocate an additional sum of 20 billion dirhams to spend on the works of the projects we have already launched to achieve the desired level of luxury for our sons and brothers”.
It has been noted that last September, the capital and the richest city of UAE, Abu Dhabi and approved 15.8 billion dirhams budget for infrastructure and social welfare projects. Other allocations are to develop the emirate’s electricity grid and waste water treatment facilities, and 3.1 billion dirhams to provide housing loans to 1,554 local citizens. Abu Dhabi is investing billions of dollars in industry, tourism and infrastructure to diversify its economy away from oil.
Meanwhile, the country’s tourism and trading hub which recently bagged the honor to host Expo 2020, Dubai is expected to generate billions of dollars of investments.
The U.S.-allied UAE is one of the wealthiest countries in the world, with per capita income of $48,200 in 2012, according to World Bank figures.