UAE Pledges $544 Million for Emirati Homes Damaged by Floods

(Bloomberg) -- The United Arab Emirates has pledged $544.5 million to help citizens repair homes damaged by huge floods that last week plunged the Middle East’s busiest commercial hub into chaos.

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The funding, equivalent to some 2 billion dirhams, was announced by the ruler of Dubai and the UAE’s Prime Minister, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, in a post on X.

The Gulf state was hit by its heaviest downpour since records began in 1949, flooding roads across the country and leaving buildings without power. Drainage systems struggled to cope with the deluge.

The money has been earmarked for Emirati citizens only. Expatriates make up more than 80% of the 10-million population in the UAE, of which Dubai is the biggest city.

Read more: Dubai Floods Expose Weaknesses to a Rapidly Changing Climate

Dubai International Airport, one of the world’s busiest, was shut down while many people were forced to work from home and schools had to close.

Scientists and weather forecasters attributed the storm to a large amount of moisture rising from warming seas to the atmosphere, before falling as rain over to the Arabian Peninsula.

The scale of the floods and subsequent damage has raised questions about oil-rich UAE’s preparedness for extreme weather events that are linked to human-caused climate change.

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