Skip to content
Subscriber Only

Abu Dhabi Lets Foreigners Own Land to Spark Lackluster Market

  • Emirate has seen values fall since oil price slump in 2014
  • Previously, foreigners could only obtain 99-year land lease
Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. Announces Major Upstream Project
Photographer: Christopher Pike/Bloomberg

Abu Dhabi will allow foreigners to own the land under their homes and offices for the first time as the emirate looks for ways to bolster its stalled property market.

The oil-rich sheikhdom will let individuals and companies enter so-called freehold agreements across 30 designated zones after previously restricting them to a 99-year lease of the land. Abu Dhabi resisted the step long after neighboring Dubai decided to allow such purchases in 2002.