Hello,

We noticed you're browsing in private or incognito mode.

To continue reading this article, please exit incognito mode or log in.

Not an Insider? Subscribe now for unlimited access to online articles.

Kevin Bullis

A View from Kevin Bullis

Why Dubai's Troubles Won't Hurt Masdar

The zero emissions city probably won’t founder as a result of a neighbor’s economic crisis.

  • November 30, 2009

Dubai, one of the emirates in the United Arab Emirates, has been all over the news lately because it announced that its investment arm, Dubai World, won’t be able to pay its massive debts in time. That might lead some to wonder whether a prominent UAE project, Masdar City–a city that will produce no carbon dioxide emissions if it works as planned–will be affected.

It probably won’t. Masdar City is backed by not by Dubai, the most famous of the UAE emirates, but by the emirate of Abu Dhabi. Although less visible internationally, Abu Dhabi is actually far larger and richer than Dubai. Abu Dhabi also has most of the UAE’s oil reserves, while Dubai has largely exhausted its oil and relies on real estate and other investments. So while Dubai is hurting, Abu Dhabi is doing okay.

If Masdar is hurt, I think it will be indirectly. Some experts worry that trouble in Dubai could lead to a freeze in credit markets beyond the UAE, which could hurt real estate investment generally. Although Abu Dhabi is providing funding for the basic infrastructure for the city, much of that project is supposed to be financed by outside investors, who might be reluctant to invest given a tough financial climate.

Tech Obsessive?
Become an Insider to get the story behind the story — and before anyone else.

Subscribe today

Uh oh–you've read all of your free articles for this month.

Insider Premium
$179.95/yr US PRICE

More from Sustainable Energy

Can we sustainably provide food, water, and energy to a growing population during a climate crisis?

Want more award-winning journalism? Subscribe to Insider Online Only.
  • Insider Online Only {! insider.prices.online !}*

    {! insider.display.menuOptionsLabel !}

    Unlimited online access including articles and video, plus The Download with the top tech stories delivered daily to your inbox.

    See details+

    What's Included

    Unlimited 24/7 access to MIT Technology Review’s website

    The Download: our daily newsletter of what's important in technology and innovation

/
You've read all of your free articles this month. This is your last free article this month. You've read of free articles this month. or  for unlimited online access.