DUBAI, United Arab Emirates – The inaugural opening of the French retail market, Auchan, in Dubai’s Dragon Mart mall, is said to have marked the beginning of a food price war in the UAE, according to an October 30 story from arabianbusiness.com.
The market’s debut on Thursday highlighted a new partnership between the Auchan group and Nakheel, a Dubai property development firm. Hypercorp, the new hypermarket division of Nakheel’s Retailcorp portfolio, envisions there will be 15 more Auchan hypermarkets and 40 more supermarkets opening across the Gulf Cooperation Council in the next 10 years.
Hypercorp CEO Jean Marie Teyssedre, said Auchan’s global buying power would help bring down already sky-high food prices in the Middle East and that the company would not hesitate to import goods that are priced too high locally. “Our objective is to break their monopoly and to pass on part of the savings to the customer,” he said.
It has also been reported that retailers in the UAE forecast food prices decreasing by up to 30 per cent should greater competition exist among the importers that now control the market.