Dubai: Dubailand is planning two new multi-million dirham projects in sports tourism and entertainment that it expects to announce this year, according to Khalid Al Malek, group chief executive officer of Dubai Properties Group (DPG).

“We [Dubailand] are in negotiations with a number of investors to do new tourism projects in sports, leisure and desert tourism. We are talking to local and Gulf investors. We would provide the land for development,” he told Gulf News in an interview on the sidelines of the Arabian Travel Market (ATM).

“This year, we expect to announce two projects in Dubailand in sports tourism, hospitality or leisure and entertainment,” he said.

The property market will see growth from the tourism sector as Dubai seeks to build more entertainment and leisure destinations, he said, referring to the Ruler of Dubai’s Vision for Tourism for 2020.

DPG is considering developments in residential, logistics and services sector and will announce specific projects soon, Al Malek said, but refused to divulge details. “These are vital sectors and need development and there is demand,” he said.

Mudon townhouses

Last month, DPG launched sales of 350 townhouses in Mudon, a part of Dubailand. Of these, 200 were dedicated for sale to Emiratis only.

“A big portion of Emiratis, many of whom have government jobs, do not get a chance to line up and register [for projects on sale]. So, we set aside these units to attract them. They have been impacted in terms of not getting opportunities to register,” he said.

DPG will continue dedicating some units to Emiratis only in its future developments, depending on demand, with the remaining units open for expatriate applicants, he said.

Of the 350 townhouses in Mudon, the 200 units dedicated to Emiratis are fully sold out and the remaining 150 units were put up for sale on Sunday, with the number of applicants exceeding the number of units available, he said.

Al Malek insisted that DPG has the liquidity to complete the Mudon project comprising 4,000 units across a span of five years.

‘Real estate market has matured’

Commenting on the health of the real estate market, he said: “The biggest players, developers, buyers and sellers, have matured. But regulations have to be ahead of the curve.”

As market activity picks up and transaction volumes increase, the regulations have to keep up with the market, he said.

“In the next period, the real estate market will experience growth. So, it will need new products from banks and developers. The law has to monitor this so that there is no imbalance in the property market,” Al Malek added.