The impact of the global financial crisis hit Bahrain and severely affected the economy; it also assisted in bringing a large number of real estate projects to a halt.

The stalled projects not only affected individual investors who paid substantial amounts of money to invest in these developments, but it also caused a detrimental effect on the economy of Bahrain.

The government took action on 6 December 2014, when Legislative Decree No. 66 of 2014 regarding the Settlement of Stalled Real Estate Projects came into force. The new Law was introduced to re-start real estate development projects in Bahrain where units have been sold off-plan, payments have been made, and the projects have either been stopped or stalled. The new Law implemented a committee appointed by the Cabinet of Ministers who are responsible for investigating stalled projects.

The new Law has undeniably had significant effects so far, as developments have been resurrected, following a significant period of project stagnation.

The new Law allows the Committee up to 18 months from the date the developer is asked to submit completion plans for a stalled project to publicly issue a final plan of action. This provides investors with assurance that the government sees stalled projects as a serious issue and is taking all the necessary steps needed to revive them.

It is clear that the new Law is having a positive effect and demonstrates the advancement in Bahrain’s property laws. Resuming a number of stalled projects a year after the Law came into force illustrates Bahrain’s determination to restore its image with real estate investors locally and internationally, as well as continuing to rebuild its economy after the global financial crisis.

It is also important that Bahrain moves further forward and takes the necessary steps to establish a regulator to maintain, monitor, assist and provide appropriate support to enable the real estate sector to expand even further and flourish in the years to come.