Thursday, March 25, 2010
The government of Dubai announced that it intends to provide $9.5 billion to Dubai World to allow the government-owned investment company to restructure its debt.
The announcement comes as part of Dubai World’s plan to restructure more than $23 billion of debt, including converting nearly $9 billion of debt into equity, after its collapse last fall. The package includes $8 billion of funding to Nakheel, Dubai World’s real estate subsidiary, as well as $1.5 billion to Dubai World as a whole. The restructuring plan also seeks to, within eight years, repay all of Dubai World’s creditors.
According to the government of Dubai, $5.7 billion of the aid was from a former $10 billion loan to Dubai World, with the remainder being internally funded. The plan would transfer ownership of Nakheel, formerly a subsidiary of Dubai World, to the direct control of the Dubai government.
Response to the deal was largely positive, with one analyst saying the move “boosts sentiment because this is a strong commitment.” Christopher Davidson, author of books on Dubai and Abu Dhabi, said that while the new funding would “keep the wolves outside the gates a little longer,” the government could not be the sole funder of Dubai World and Nakheel.