Abu Dhabi's Aldar Properties and Dubai's Emaar Properties – two of the UAE's largest real estate developers – have created a joint venture (JV) worth $8.1bn (AED30bn).
An agreement was signed between Emaar chairman, HE Mohamed Alabbar, and Aldar chairman, HE Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak, to formalise the partnership.
Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, HH Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, attended the signing ceremony.
The JV will initially focus on two projects – one each in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, and its $8.1bn pipeline will also include national and international projects.
The master-planned destination in Abu Dhabi will be situated within the Cultural District of Al Saadiyat Island, named Saadiyat Grove.
Aldar said in a press statement that the project would provide "a pivotal link between the Louvre Abu Dhabi [...], as well as the planned Zayed National Museum, the UAE's first national museum, and the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi".
Set to open in 2021, the mixed-use development will feature approximately 2,000 residential units, two hotels, 400 serviced apartments, and 130,000m2 of lifestyle and retail space, designed with a focus on the lifestyle of millennials.
The second project is a waterfront development, named Emaar Beachfront.
The private island development along the Arabian Gulf will feature a wide range of leisure and lifestyle options, including food and beverage (F&B) outlets, beachside play areas, and retail spaces.
Emaar Beachfront will comprise around 7,000 residential units, and offer access to a 1.5km sandy beach.
Located off King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud Street, between Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR) and Palm Jumeirah, Emaar Beachfront will be accessible from Sheikh Zayed Road and Dubai Marina.
The JV between Aldar and Emaar will focus on the development of master-planned destinations, and is expected to spur similar co-investment opportunities between developers from both emirates.
Commenting on the project, HH Sheikh Mohammed said: "We are happy to witness the signing of this partnership, which will contribute to our development journey and help enhance the UAE's position as a tourism destination of choice.
"We have great ambitions and we are confident our national firms have the capabilities to achieve them.
"We want our companies to be at the forefront of our development and collaborate with each other to explore creative ideas for strengthening the UAE's leadership."
HH Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed lauded the partnership between the two firms, which is the first of its kind in the UAE, adding that the move was aimed at creating new opportunities for investment growth, and identifying projects that could enhance the UAE's leadership and competitiveness.
Remarking on the JV, Emaar's Alabbar said: "We are drawing on our proven competencies in delivering high quality master-planned communities that have not only redefined lifestyles but also created tremendous economic value for our country.
"This partnership sends a powerful message that the UAE is at the forefront in shaping global real estate trends, and also signifies the unbreakable bond between the two emirates."
Aldar's Al Mubarak added: "Without doubt, the [JV] will expand the country's portfolio of iconic real estate projects, and there is no limit to the development possibilities created by the JV partnership between Aldar and Emaar.
"Individually, we have developed some of the world's most awe-inspiring buildings and together, we have an incredible proposition that will contribute to achieving our national vision and make the UAE an even more exciting place to live and visit."