GHC run construction company to be privatised

ABU DHABI—Pursuing its plans to privatise state-owned companies, Shaikh Hamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Chairman Abu Dhabi Economic and Planning department yesterday announced privatisation of a construction company run by General Holding Company (GHC), by year-end.

By Staff Reporter

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Published: Tue 15 Nov 2005, 9:48 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 5:16 PM

Shaikh Hamed made this announcement at the ceremony organised to launch the Emerging Abu Dhabi 2006, a comprehensive economic review published in the shape of a book by Oxford Business Group (OBG), which has discussed the recent policy initiatives and economic achievements.

He said that Abu Dhabi is at the threshold of a major economic transformation and government is working on a strategic intended to build, in partnership with the private sector, a new economy, open, diversified, innovative, export oriented, capital and knowledge intensive.

He said that Abu Dhabi will no longer be just a consumer market, but shall become a manufacturing, services, and logistics hub, while continuing to leverage its core competitive strengths, driven by Energy and capital. We want to make Abu Dhabi the ideal place to work, invest, live and prosper", he said.

"As Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Department of Economy and Planning, I would like to briefly outline our government’s plans for the future of Abu Dhabi’s economy. My Government believes that the public sector should promote and support the private sector rather than compete with it, and as such, a new initiative was recently adopted to promote rapid and sustainable economic development", Shaikh Hamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan said.

He said that this initiative is based on five overall strategies and top of it is privatisation of state-owned assets, in which the emirate is pioneering when it sold out its electric power generation plants, the establishment of ADWEA, and the successful listing of TAQA. Last year, the government successfully privatised its food industries, and is set to privatise its construction industries by the end of this year.

The second strategy involves the strengthening of the Abu Dhabi Securities Market, by providing the ADSM with all the support to develop and enforce rules and regulations based on international standards, covering disclosure, transparency and Corporate Governance rules.

The third strategy involves diversifying our industrial base, by focusing on high-value, capital and energy intensive industries, such as petrochemicals, steel and aluminum, which will provide the basis for the creation of many other related industries and services. The fourth strategy relates to the creation of specialised economic zone, with the formation of the Higher Corporation for Specialised Economic Zones, is a new milestone in the economic development of Abu Dhabi and a vital step towards our ability to effectively compete in the global marketplace. " HCSEZ is intended to be a one-stop, multi-tasked agency that facilitates the needs of investors and eliminates the red tape usually associated with the establishment and operation of new businesses", he said.

Along these lines, the Department of Economy has streamlined and simplified the procedures for obtaining trade licenses, using information technology, thereby reducing the processing time from what used to take weeks and months to LESS than one hour.

The fifth strategy relates to Tourism and its related infrastructure, where a master plan for its development was put in place. The newly created Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority is tasked with the promotion of Abu Dhabi as the next tourist destination, he added.

The two cornerstones of this strategy are the establishment of Al Ittihad Airways and the expansion of Abu Dhabi airport, with the construction of a new $4 billion state of the art terminal. The development of Islands and beaches, such as Al Saadiyat, Al Reem and Al Raha, and the planned increase, through public private partnerships, of hotel room capacity, will help establish Abu Dhabi as a major tourist destination.

The greatest wealth any nation can have is a shared Vision of a brighter future and a determined will to achieve it." We have the vision, we have the will and above all we have the people to deliver on that vision", Shaikh Hamed said.

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