Dubai World makes final repayment to creditors of $8.2 billion

DUBAI (Reuters) - State conglomerate Dubai World, at the centre of Dubai’s debt crisis a decade ago, said on Tuesday it had made a final payment of $8.2 billion to creditors.

The payment, made ahead of its September 2022 maturity, was an “important milestone” for the company and Dubai, Dubai World Chairman Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed al-Maktoum said in a statement.

“Once more ... our action underscores Dubai’s commitment to always meet its obligations,” said Sheikh Ahmed, who is also a member of Dubai’s ruling family.

The company made the payment using funds from a new $3 billion loan from Dubai Islamic Bank DISB.DU, asset sales and dividend payments, it said.

Dubai World, whose assets include global port operator DP World DPW.DI, said it had paid $18.9 billion to creditors since 2011.

“Looking ahead ... Dubai World will focus on streamlining and strengthening its efforts to deliver long-term value for all stakeholders,” Sheikh Ahmed said.

Dubai World restructured $23.5 billion in debt about 10 years ago after the global financial crisis and collapse in oil prices took its toll on the Middle East trade and tourism hub.

As elsewhere, Dubai has been hit by the coronavirus pandemic that brought many parts of the global economy to a near halt.

Dubai’s debt stood at $124 billion, a government advisor said in October.

Reporting by Alexander Cornwell; editing by David Evans