Dubai's office sector shows strength in first half of 2014
The growing importance of Dubai as an international business centre has been highlighted by the strong performance of the emirate during the first half of the year.
Data from The First Group has revealed that office rents and occupancy have both increased in the city during the first two quarters of 2014, with growing business activity across the region progressively driving an increase in prices and occupancy rates.
In the central business district (CBD), vacancy rates have fallen to 25 per cent, which is indicative of a rise in overall occupancy levels of nearly four per cent when compared to the final two quarters of 2013.
This comes at a time when Dubai is going from strength to strength in economic terms, strengthening the case for businesses to invest in the location. Recent official data from Dubai Foreign Direct Investment has revealed that the emirate's retail sector is expected to reach a record high of AED150 billion (£24.8 billion) by the end of 2014 - up from AED114 billion in 2012.
In the last few years, many of the world's top brands have made a priority of expanding their reach to Dubai, transforming the city into one of the most desirable and popular retail locations globally.
Indeed, it was named the world's best place for shopping by TripAdvisor earlier this year, while Forbes ranked the emirate seventh in its most recent list of the world's most influential cities - a position it is expected to improve upon as it continues to grow in the coming years.
Dubai's status as an international business capital will be underlined further at the end of October, when the city plays host to Global Trade Development Week 2014, attracting more than 600 high-level global delegates from more than 70 countries and various industries.
Recent research from JLL also indicates that business sentiment and demand for commercial space in the region continues to improve, while strong levels of present and future supply in the commercial property sector means it remains straightforward for businesses to expand or relocate.