Egypt nets $2.3 bln in government land auction

Egyptian and Gulf real estate firms bought three large tracts of land near Cairo on Saturday earmarked for housing development, netting LE 13.3 billion ($2.3 billion) for the government, officials said.
Housing Ministry officials said that Qatar’s Barwa Real Estate Co. bought 1,980 feddans (7.92 million square meters) of land in New Cairo on the outskirts of the Egyptian capital for 6.11 billion pounds.
Damac Properties of the United Arab Emirates bought 1,500 feddans for 4.74 billion pounds, and Egypt’s Ru’ya Tourism and Real Estate Investment Company bought 460 feddans for 2.49 billion pounds, the officials said.
A second land auction is expected to take place on Sunday for an additional five tracts of land, and Egyptian media have reported that three companies have been short-listed for each tract. The money from the deals is to go to the Egyptian treasury, officials said.
Media reports that the eight plots of land the government has offered for sale at auction would make at least $4.6 billion has lifted Egyptian stock indexes to highs in recent weeks, led by real estate and housing stocks, as brokerages adjusted upward their valuations of the firms.

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