Dubai’s Majid Al Futtaim Holding (MAF) is proceeding with its Beirut plans despite the regional instability and will be opening its Carrefour store next year:
MAF is planning to expand its Carrefour franchise to Iraq and Lebanon in the next year, taking the total number of MENA states in which it operates to 13.
“We are planning Carrefour openings in northern Iraq this year and Lebanon next year,”
The developer behind Dubai’s three largest malls is also behind the Beirut City Center slated for completion by 2013 (or by MAF’s comments above maybe even 2012) which will house 180 retail shops, cinemas, rooftop restaurants and an entertainment center. Despite the aggressive expansion plans, MAF is stepping cautiously when it comes to Egypt and Syria:
MAF’s development activity in Syria and Egypt had been curtailed by the political unrest in the two countries this year.
“The progress of these projects will be determined on the basis of political developments as well as on the basis of the projects’ ability to meet the Group’s own risk management policy and investment criteria,” it said.
Who would have thought Lebanon and Iraq would outdo Egypt and Syria in terms of stability.