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DUBAI: The Dubai stock market closed higher on Sunday, buoyed by gains in property shares, while strong first-quarter earnings from Commercial International Bank led gains in Egypt. Dubai's main share index ended up 1.3%, extending gains for a fifth consecutive session, boosted by a 2.7% rise in Emaar Properties.

House prices in Dubai are expected to rise for the first time in six years in 2021, supported by a swift vaccine rollout that has lifted hopes for economic recovery, a Reuters poll of property analysts showed.

DAMAC Properties jumped 3.7%. Egypt's blue-chip index gained 0.7%, with its top lender Commercial International Bank (COMI) up 2.8% after posting net income of 2.87 billion Egyptian pound ($184 million) for the first-qaurter, a 20% rise year-on-year.

Saudi Arabia's benchmark index closed flat, as gains in property and petrochemicals were offset by declines in banks. Elsewhere, Alkhorayef Water and Power Technologies fell more than 5% after a quarterly net profit drop. In Abu Dhabi, the index added 0.4%, with the country's largest lender First Abu Dhabi Bank rising 0.6%, while Abu Dhabi National Oil Company For Distribution advanced 1.9%.

ADNOC Distribution named Bader Al Lamki as its new chief executive on Thursday, effective May 27. The Qatari benchmark fell 0.4%, hit by a 1% fall in Qatar Islamic Bank and a 1.9% decline in Qatar International Islamic Bank.

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