Arabtec Construction, a unit of the Dubai-based Arabtec Holding, has been awarded a Dh222 million ($60m) contract by Abu Dhabi’s Aabar Investments to construct and complete the residential development on a plot in Najmat, Abu Dhabi. In a statement posted on the Dubai bourse, where Arabtec is listed, Greg Christofides, CEO of Arabtec Construction, said: “This is another positive sign that the UAE economy is growing and that the construction markets in the UAE are active again.” The scope of the project includes construction and maintenance of a residential tower comprising 229 apartments over 23 floors. The duration of the project is 22 months, the statement said. “With the recent award to the company in Dubai and others expected in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, the UAE is still an important market for the company, and forms an important part of our GCC strategy that included our expansion in Saudi Arabia in recent years,” Christofides added. Sovereign fund Aabar, which owns stakes in high-profile names such as commodities trader Glencore and Italy’s UniCredit, raised its stake in Arabtec Holding to 10.45 per cent this month, just weeks after boosting its holding to 5.3 per cent in early March. The move made Aabar the largest shareholder and analysts have said the fund may increase its stake further in the Dubai builder. Arabtec Holding recently nominated four executives from Aabar to its board. Aabar’s Chairman Kadem Abdulla al-Qubaisi and CEO Mohammed Ahmed al-Husseiny were among executives included in the list of board member nominees.