Economic drivers, start your engines
UAE identifies several key sectors that will significantly help drive economy of the future.
The UAE has identified tourism, entrepreneurship, SMEs, startups, retail, the digital economy, e-commerce, food security, Fourth Industrial Revolution tech and space as industries that will significantly contribute and drive the economy of the future, Minister of Economy Abdullah bin Touq Al Mari said.
“Furthermore, we are committed to attract creative minds and innovators so they can benefit from the UAE’s potential to serve as an incubator for creative, talented professionals and change-makers,” Al Mari said in his opening speech on the first day of the Annual Investment Meeting (AIM).
The three-day AIM 2020 digital event will see dozens of high-level officials from the public and private sector addressing the forum.
The minister added that the UAE will maintain the principles of openness and liberalisation of trade and facilitating the movement of goods and services.
“The UAE enjoys a prominent position on global trade and the investment map, supported by its economic and trade policies that promote openness, agility, business facilitation and links with foreign markets. Our commercial and logistics sector are also second to none, complemented by first-degree soft infrastructure and legislative and digital frameworks that will ensure that the UAE will maintain its future positions as a global trade and investment hub,” he added.
Highlighting the country’s achievements, Al Mari said the UAE is one of the world’s top 20 economies for attracting foreign direct investment. Euromonitor has ranked the UAE as the third most resilient economy in 2020 post-Covid-19. Similarly, IMD World rated the UAE as ninth most competitive country based on economic performance, government and business efficiency and infrastructure.
“These high global rankings show that the UAE is a solid and resilient nation, which is at the forefront of economic transformation and sustainability,” he added.
The minister stressed that the UAE will actively contribute in the development of international trade and support a multilateral trading system.
“Our future plans in foreign investment for the next 50 years is to make the UAE a global investment hub, taking first place in flow of foreign investment. Our economic diversification will create investment opportunities in research and development, innovation, advanced technologies, communication, blockchain, robotics, genetics and many other sectors. The UAE aims to lead in the supply of financial and logistics services to support the flow of investment to our close regions the GCC, Asia and Africa,” said Al Mari.
Speaking at the AIM 2020, Dr Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, UAE Minister of State for Entrepreneurship and SMEs, said small and medium enterprises are significant contributors to the global economy, representing 90 per cent of businesses and over 50 per cent of employment worldwide.
“In the UAE, SMEs are backbone of the economy, contributing almost 50 per cent to the GDP. It is estimated that by 2030, the increasing global workforce will require 600 million jobs, making the expansion of SMEs a top priority for governments worldwide. Despite great contribution, SMEs are the ones who are greatly exposed to the pandemic because of their vulnerability to disruption,” said Dr Al Falasi.
“It is essential for SMEs to be given opportunities to bounce back from the impact of the pandemic and be provided with a conducive environment that empowers them to have the capability to support growth and succeed. We must enhance the ability of entrepreneurs to surpass challenges caused by this pandemic.”