Simon Azzam, the chief executive of Union Properties, has resigned, as the company enters its most challenging period of the global financial crisis.

The company gave no reason for Azzam’s resignation in its statement to the Dubai Financial Market, and said it had appointed Khalid al Jarwan, a former executive of Dubai Investments Group and Abu Dhabi National Oil Company, as general manager.

A spokesman for the company declined to comment further.

Chet Riley, an analyst at Nomura Securities, said Mr Azzam had 'been under a lot of pressure for a long time'.

The National