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LONDON: Qatari Diar, backed by the Qatari Investment Authority, will fund the multibillion-pound development of the former Chelsea Barracks through its own cash, the Financial Times reported yesterday. Qatar has been one of the most active investors in the London market, with state-backed groups acquiring stakes in companies such as Canary Wharf as well as other developments, including the Shard skyscraper at London Bridge.
Qatari Diar has bought out the loan of more than £1bn that had been used to acquire the 12.8 acre site for a record-breaking price. The Islamic financing was the largest its kind for the UK. Stephen Barter, chief executive of Qatari Diar, said that the company had drawn a line under the previous structure, which was partly owned by the Candy brothers’ CPC Group.
Qatari Diar bought the brothers out of the development, although this led to a High Court clash after it withdrew the planning application for the original scheme following the intervention of Prince Charles. The terms of the settlement have been kept confidential. The new master plan for Chelsea Barracks will be submitted this month, with a first detailed application expected within a year. Barter said: “We have drawn the line under the case. Now we are looking to the next stages of Chelsea Barracks. The expectation is to develop it entirely with our equity. It will be the best of the best.” Agencies