Nov. 28, 2009, 12:36 PM
Very interesting - I had thought all that development was financed by Dubai oil money, not credit. Du-bubble may be accurate after all.
Nov. 30, 2009, 03:53 PM
They claim "no" but you just have to wonder at what point can someone continue to spend on what is effectively borrowed money? Dubai has never been a oil producer rather they looked to diversify beyond just being a port of call for other oil nations.
UK's Mirror 11-28-09 "Sheikh carries on spending despite Dubai cash crisis " (http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/racing-betting/racing-news/2009/11/28/sheikh-carries-on-spending-despite-dubai-cash-crisis-115875-21856661/)
There were plenty wondering what would become of his turf empire. Well, they got their answer yesterday when the Sheikh splashed £355,000 for three foals at the Tattersalls sales. And the Sheikh's bloodstock advisor John Ferguson sought to allay fears.
Ferguson said: "His Highness Sheikh Mohammed's involvement with horses has no relation to the Dubai corporate restructuring."
So, despite the problems, the Sheikh's Darley Stud and Godolphin racing operation will carry on.
London Evening Standard 11-30-09 "Dubai crisis won't affect Sheikh's racing ambitions, insists advisor" (http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standard-sport/article-23777051-dubai-crisis-wont-affect-sheikhs-racing-ambitions-insists-advisor.do)
But with neighbouring Abu Dhabi set to bail out Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed, who is vice-president of the United Arab Emirates, will still continue his racing interests.
That is also good news for the Dubai World Cup, which takes place on 27 March at the new Meydan racecourse. The grandstand, which will hold 80,000 people, has cost £1.2bn alone.
But the coming months are certain to be difficult for the Sheikh.
One bloodstock agent, who spoke under condition of anonymity, said: "His involvement may be good for British racing, but continuing to splash out at the sales while Dubai World owes a fortune to creditors clearly sends the wrong message. Is it ethically correct?
"It will be interesting to see what people make of the opening of Meydan, with all its opulence, while Dubai is in financial crisis. I should imagine Sheikh Mohammed is going to feel very awkward."
I hope Michael Dickinson (Tapeta) has been paid in full for his work with Meydan ;)