By Summer Said
DUBAI (Reuters) - Dubai, already the region's gold trade hub, may see the launch of the Middle East's first gold exchange traded fund (ETF) in 2008, a senior World Gold Council (WGC) official said on Monday.
"Gold trade in Dubai and the region is definitely booming and the market players need an ETF market to manage their risk and catch up with other international markets," said Moaz Barakat, managing director of the WGC in the Middle East, Turkey and Pakistan.
"There is a great interest for ETFs in the region... We may have a Dubai ETF next year."
ETFs offer investors exposure in the underlying commodity without taking physical delivery. Sponsors of gold ETFs buy a matching amount of the commodity from the market to keep in vaults.
"It will be linked to a dollar-based gold price, but it has not been decided yet if it will be listed on the Dubai Gold and Commodities Exchange or the Dubai International Finance Exchange," he said.