DIFC 2.0 launched; Finance hub to triple in scale

By Eudore R.Chand

DUBAI 8 January 2019: A new chapter in the development of the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) began yesterday with the launch of DIFC 2.0.

The Centre’s phased growth plan will triple the scale of the leading financial hub in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (Measa) region and enable DIFC to drive the future of finance.

“The next phase requires the introduction of the latest technologies that can support the growth of various business sectors. We are not only trying to meet the requirements of the present time but also be a major contributor to shaping the future of the world’s economy and positively influence greater well-being for the world. We are confident that Emiratis will be successful in achieving this strategic objective,” said His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

He  said Dubai is working towards cementing its position as a pivotal economic and commercial hub for the region in line with the Fifty-Year Charter.

His Highness said that developing the financial sector is a priority that supports the economic future of Dubai, and further enhances investor confidence given the vital contribution it makes to Dubai’s economy.

“The financial sector remains one of the cornerstones of our economy. We are keen that the development of infrastructure is matched by the development of legislation by continuously reviewing it to ensure it is among the best in the world and that it can facilitate the best environment for supporting greater excellence and achievement,” His Highness said.

Sheikh Mohammed also praised the achievements of DIFC that helped Dubai become one of the leading financial centres in the world. He was accompanied by Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and President of DIFC Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Civil Aviation Authority and Chairman of Emirates Group Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and Sheikh Mansour bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

Governor of DIFC, Essa Kazim, briefed His Highness about the new expansion which will add a total of 13 million square feet to the Centre’s integrated ecosystem. The new development will provide an international focal point for FinTech and innovation, enhancing the Centre’s reputation as one of the world’s most advanced financial centres.

Project Timeline

The development of DIFC 2.0 will commence immediately and will be completed in several stages. Upon completion, the new district will comprise:

  • 6.4 million square feet of office space
  • 2.6 million square feet of creative space
  • 1.5 million square feet of residences
  • 1.3 million square feet of retail space and
  • 700,000 square feet devoted to leisure and entertainment
  • Financial campus covering approximately 400,000 square feet
  • Additional 250,000 square feet of hospitality offerings, and
  • 3.5 million square feet of car parking space

DIFC, the largest international financial hub in the Measa region, boasts more than 22,000 professionals working across over 2,000 companies in the district, including the leading regional and global players in the financial services industry.

DIFC 2.0 is an extension of the existing jurisdiction, with direct connections to Dubai’s public transport networks. Embracing a pedestrian lifestyle, the next phase is set apart from conventional city living with underground service paths allowing for the free movement of bikes, pedestrians, cars and smart transportation.

With sustainability remaining a priority for the Centre, the new development will introduce open green spaces that bring together an innovative community within a natural and sophisticated business environment.