Dubai Shares Rise to 2-Week High on Qatar World Cup Contract Speculation

Dubai’s shares rose to the highest in two weeks, led by construction and real-estate companies, on speculation they may benefit from Qatar’s infrastructure spending for the 2022 soccer World Cup.

Arabtec Holding PJSC, the biggest construction company in the United Arab Emirates, surged the most since March. Emaar Properties PJSC rose 1.6 percent after saying it will pursue development contracts in Qatar. The Dubai Financial Market General Index increased 1.1 percent to 1,706.24, the highest since Nov. 22, at the 2 p.m. close in the emirate. Dubai’s market was closed from Dec. 2 for holidays. Qatar’s QE Index rose 0.6 percent to the highest in more than two years. It soared 3.6 percent yesterday.

“Companies that have an on-the-ground presence in Qatar, especially in construction infrastructure related spaces” are gaining, said Shehzad Janab, head of asset management at Dubai- based Daman Investments PSC. “What this World Cup win means is that spending will be accelerated with a new impetus” by Qatar.

Qatar will be the first nation from the Middle East to hold the world’s most-watched sporting event. Russia was chosen to host the 2018 tournament. The emirate plans to spend $4 billion on stadium construction and refurbishment program, and build a rail and metro network, costing more than $25 billion.

Arabtec soared 9.1 percent, the most since March 28, to 2.03 dirhams. Arabtec Construction, a unit of the builder, in June won a 520 million-riyal ($143 million) contract to build the World Trade Center Tower in Qatar.

Qatari Unit

Drake & Scull International PJSC, an engineering contractor with a unit in Qatar, increased 6.5 percent to 1.02 dirhams, the highest since November 2009. The company is building a district cooling plant in Doha, according to its website.

Emaar, the company with the heaviest weighting on Dubai’s index and builder of the world’s tallest skyscraper, rose the most since Nov. 21 to 3.73 dirhams. “If there is any opportunity, you will see me in Qatar,” Chairman Mohamed Alabbar said in an interview with Al Arabiya television. Dubai’s real estate index climbed 2.4 percent.

Oil traded near its highest in 26 months on speculation the U.S. may extend stimulus measures, bolstering demand in the world’s largest consumer of crude. Crude for January delivery rose as much as 0.6 percent to $89.76 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The six Gulf Arab nations, including Saudi Arabia and the U.A.E., supply about a fifth of the world’s oil.

Abu Dhabi’s ADX General Index increased 0.1 percent, while Saudi Arabia’s Tadawul All Share Index was little changed, dropping less than 0.1 percent. Bahrain’s All Share Index rose 0.5 percent and Oman’s MSM30 Index advanced 0.3 percent. Kuwait’s gauge increased less than 0.1 percent.

To contact the reporter on this story: Zahra Hankir in Dubai at zhankir@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Claudia Maedler at cmaedler@bloomberg.net

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