Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC)
Dubai International Financial Centre Overview
This 110 acre financial quarter is located between Burj Khalifa and Emirates Towers and comprises three districts: commercial, retail and residential. All three are linked by a retail corridor. Roughly sixty percent of the properties planned for DIFC have been completed, while the remainder are still in development.
DIFC is well connected to the rest of Dubai by excellent road and rail links, Dubai International Airport and the business districts of Downtown Dubai and Business Bay are all less than twenty minutes drive or twenty five minute train ride away.
Because DIFC is the financial centre of Dubai the majority of buildings are commercial properties. About 30% of the land here is earmarked for high rise apartments, and of that about one third has been built. Park Towers, twin 49-storey apartment buildings, have been completed and when the first tranche of apartments went on sale they were snapped up within 48 hours.
The luxury fit-out may not always be matched by a luxury floor plan, but if you can’t have it all at least you get fantastic views of some of Dubai’s most famous landmarks, including the Burj Khalifa and Emirates Towers.
In January 2019 it was announced that DIFC was to be expanded by the addition of 13 million sq ft of space, to be known as DIFC 2.0.
In January 2020 the Dubai Future District was launched, connecting the Dubai International Financial Centre with The Dubai World Trade Center (DWTC) and Emirates Towers to create a hub to develop the ‘new economy’ announced by HH Sheikh Mohammed in the 4 January 2020 Document. In it he pledged to continue working on developing the emirate by welcoming national and international talents; building new partnerships that create job opportunities; providing financing to entrepreneurs and startups; adopting initiatives that facilitate the establishment of new companies; and the launch of innovative ideas to design the economy of the future.
The Dubai Future District is expected to be the Middle East’s biggest future economy-focused district, with a future economy research centre, incubators and accelerators, and an innovative space for future economy pioneers.
- The master developer is DIFC Authority.
- From Dubai International Financial Centre it takes roughly six minutes to drive to Dubai Mall, 20 minutes to Palm Jumeirah, 18 minutes to Burj Al Arab and 23 minutes to The Walk JBR.
- Dubai International Airport (DXB) is roughly 32 minutes' drive and the new Al Maktoum International Airport is roughly 43 minutes' drive. All durations are calculated by Google Maps and assume the fastest route in typical traffic conditions.
In October 2019 Dubai moved into the top ten of the Global Financial Centres Index (GFCI) at eighth position.
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Dubai International Financial Centre Amenities
Those who live here can eat, shop, work and play all within DIFC. A walk down from one of the residential buildings leads straight onto DIFC’s retail corridor, Gate Avenue, lined by individual stores and host to regular farmer’s markets, so that residents rarely have to leave the district in order to find what they need. A modern health club offers sports enthusiasts a variety of facilities, including squash, tennis and basketball courts. The landscaped grounds provide residents with places to walk and socialise. Fine dining, cafés, well-known retail stores and an entertainment centre are all just a short walk away.
DIFC’s Town Centre, still in development, claims to become one of Dubai’s ‘most distinctive lifestyle destinations’, with outdoor restaurants and cafés and a variety of street entertainment acts. It will also offer a central market selling fruit, vegetables, fish, meats and cheeses.
A cinema and theatre will add to the evening attractions, and those looking to party until the early hours will, we are told, be able to meander into one of the district’s varied nightclubs and dance the night away.
The Dubai International Financial Centre is a business freezone geared towards financial institutions looking to establish operations in Dubai. It is an independent jurisdiction under the UAE Constitution and has its own civil and commercial laws, based on English law, which it upholds though its own court system and arbitration centre. This covers areas such corporate, commercial, civil, employment, trusts, and securities law. UAE criminal and immigration laws still apply however.
The area is governed by the DIFC Authority and is self regulated under the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA). It even has its own financial exchange, the NASDAQ Dubai, which has been in operation since 2005.
By mid 2020 there were over 2,500 firms registered in the freezone with a workforce of around 25,000. As per the freezone rules all companies enjoy zero tax on income and profits as well as unrestricted repatriation of capital.
In March 2015 the DIFC announced plans to build a new commercial building in Gate Village as well as a 150 unit retail development to link together all the existing buildings. The new building, named The Exchange, was completed in March 2018.
Dubai International Financial Centre Dining and Nightlife Offers
Dubai International Financial Centre in the News
Most people who work here live in neighbouring districts and make use of the excellent road and rail links to commute. Sheik Zayed Road, the main highway through Dubai, passes alongside DIFC.
The metro also passes through DIFC with two stations, Financial Centre and Emirates Towers, serving the district.
Dubai International Financial Centre Communities
We currently maintain records for 2 sub-communities in Dubai International Financial Centre.
Dubai International Financial Centre Buildings
We currently maintain records for 28 building developments in Dubai International Financial Centre.
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