Summers in the UAE are typically languid affairs, with empty roads, deserted shopping malls and company executives taking off for the cooler climates of Morocco or the south of France.

This summer, however, many property executives will probably be spending long hours in their offices planning how their companies will get through the next six months.

'This summer is going to be the pinch point,' says Chet Riley, an analyst at Nomura Securities in Dubai. 'It will sort the men from the boys, with a whole lot of sub-developers defaulting, the bankruptcy laws getting tested, mega mergers and revolts from investors.'

The National