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Chairman Abu Dhabi group, Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak al Nahyan and Bahria Town's Malik Riaz sign the investment agreement in Abu Dhabi. —Press Release Photo

KARACHI/ISLAMABAD, Feb 15: Two real estate tycoons — chief of Abu Dhabi Group of the UAE and Pakistan’s Malik Riaz — have joined hands in a bid to construct the world’s tallest building in Karachi.

The parties signed a deal in Abu Dhabi on Friday, which envisages a staggering investment of $45 billion in Pakistan’s real estate. Apart from some stunning projects, it includes construction of the world’s tallest building, which would loom large over the current tallest Burj Khalifa of Dubai.

In Islamabad, Ali Riaz, son Malik Riaz, confirmed the signing of the agreement.

Reports from Abu Dhabi said the agreement was signed between the Chairman of Abu Dhabi Group, Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarik Al Nahyan, and Malik Riaz, best known as ex-chairman and now consultant of Bahria Town, arguably the country’s most famous real estate project. Under the terms of the agreement, a sum of $35 billion would be invested in Sindh and $10bn in Islamabad and Lahore.

The investment in Karachi is proposed to encompass a sports city, an international city, a media city and an educational and medical city. The project also includes the construction of miniatures of Seven Wonders of the World.

A big construction magnate in Karachi disclosed on condition of anonymity that the site for construction would most likely be KPT Island, known among the masses as “Kutta Island”. The island, which is 3-4km off the coast of Karachi into the Arabian Sea, derives its name from the prevailing practice of dumping stray dogs there.

This construction tycoon stated that the “Kutta Island” was at first handed over to Emmar Properties, but the deal was later scrapped. That, however, could not be immediately confirmed from Emmar Properties.

The Karachi construction magnate believes that the Abu Dhabi Group-Malik Riaz would, apart from the above mentioned projects, also launch into building of 125,000 houses on the island.

Another real estate developer said that the news should be greeted with cheers for it could give big boost to the tourist industry in the country, as people from all over the world would flock in to see the world’s tallest building and for their accommodation, hotels, residential buildings and casinos would sprout on the island. Karachi, already the industrial hub of the country, could undergo an amazing transformation into one of the world’s biggest and most modern cities.

The news flow regarding the deal said the distinguishing feature of the project would be utilisation of sea water to produce electricity. Under the project, advanced water treatment plant would be built to purify the salty water of the Arabian Sea into water fit for human consumption.

The deal is expected to generate over 2.5 million jobs in Pakistan and will promote investment opportunities for 55 local industries, including cement, iron, steel and glass. These multiple kind of projects will provide equal opportunities to lower and middle classes of the country.

Speaking on the occasion of signing the deal, Sheikh Nahyan expressed pleasure in working with Malik Riaz, saying that Bahria Town not only represented modern Pakistan but was also a credible, respected and authentic name in the real estate sector worldwide.

As regards the timeframe, the chairman of Abu Dhabi Group said: “We will Insha Allah be welcoming first residents in next three to four years”.