Markets weighed down by corruption

Andrew Foxwell

  • Last Updated: August 27. 2008 11:50PM UAE / August 27. 2008 7:50PM GMT

Although the rash of corruption probes and fraud charges in Dubai may ultimately strengthen the emirate’s economy, the pall the investigations have cast over the market is unlikely to lift soon.

The most recent sign the investigations may still be gaining momentum was yesterday’s allegations by prosecutors that Abid al Boom, an Emirati businessman, ran a bogus investment fund that fraudulently took Dh846 million (US$230m) from thousands of investors.

While the alleged scheme appeared to be separate from other probes rocking Dubai’s business circles, the press conference held to explain the charges made clear the Government’s determination to push forward in the emirate’s biggest and most public anti-corruption drive in memory.

This followed an announcement by the Dubai Public Prosecutor’s office that another press conference to announce further details into ongoing anti-corruption investigations, planned for Thursday, had been postponed. “We do not have any information to release to the public at this time,” said a prosecution spokesman.

The latest word from authorities is that a press conference will be held at the conclusion of the investigations to provide more information to the public. Public prosecutors said investigations were still in the preliminary phase and that police were looking into the alleged financial improprieties.


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