There’s some nasty words in today’s edition of the english UAE newspaper, The National, for Dubai’s creditors:
The National (via FT Alphaville): Dubai World’s creditors responded with a temper tantrum in the international media. To read the coverage of Dubai’s announcement, one might think Dubai and the companies it controls are ready to miss payment on their entire $85bn in estimated debts.
Ouch. But then they take the Lehman route of insults:
Investors mistook being government owned with being government backed. Governments in emerging economies end up starting and controlling much of the corporate scene. Eventually, if all goes well, they privatise those companies to eliminate the conflict of interest.
Until then they are major shareholders, with limited liability, like Richard Fuld was the largest shareholder at Lehman Brothers. He walked away from that wreck. Much of the coverage of Dubai’s predicament has been from the perspective of its creditors, not from that of the Government trying to figure out which businesses are worth saving and which aren’t. Little wonder: the Government has been cryptic; investors vociferous.
Perhaps Dubai should tread more lightly on the subject matter. After all, these cranky creditors turned the emirate from a desert into a blooming oasis.